Spain and the United States both won gold at the 2015 Triathlon World Olympic Qualification Event. The event also doubled as a test event for Brazil to make sure everything is running smoothly before the Olympics. The top three athletes from both races qualify to the Olympics. The event was held in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil on August 2nd 2015.
In the women’s race after the swimming portion it was New Zealand’s Rebecca Clarke that led the race, but she was quickly absorbed and passed during the cycling portion where a group of 27 cyclists broke away from the other racers. As the running portion began four athletes, two from Great Britain and two from the United States broke away from the rest of the pack. As the running portion continued athletes kept dropping out from the group of four until only Gwen Jorgensen of the United States remained. She was able to continue her pace to win with a time of 1:58:46. Great Britain’s Non Stanford and her compatriot Vicky Holland finished second and third with a time of 1:59:05 and 1:59:27 respectively.
In the men’s race it was Henri Schoeman of South Africa that led the pack after the swimming portion. During the cycling portion an eight person group eventually formed that crept ahead of the peloton with a lead of over a minute. It became clear that Spain’s Javier Gomez was going to win as he kept pushing the pace and the overall lead. The most impressive run however came from South Africa’s Richard Murray who was part of the cycling peloton and not only caught up to those in front of them, but past them with almost relative ease. Ultimately it would be enough for an Olympic quota as he was able to finish third with a time of 1:49:01. Javier Gomez won the gold medal with a time of 1:48:26 while France’s Vincent Luis won the silver with a time of 1:48:40.
While most of the quotas in triathlon will be based off of the world rankings I think it is a good idea to have some quotas to be based off an individual race. A few more continents still have their continental qualifier, but 80% of the spots won’t be known until after the world ranking cut-off, just a couple of months before the Olympics begin.
Quotas by Nation
- Great Britain – 2
- France – 1
- South Africa – 1
- Spain – 1
- United States – 1
ITU. 2015 Rio de Janeiro ITU World Olympic Qualification Event. Access on August 2 2015.