On a huge sporting weekend, Jonathan Brownlee hopes British triathletes in Hamburg will emulate the success of the England football team at the fifth round of the ITU World Triathlon Series.
Saturday’s sprint races around the centre of historic Hamburg feature all of the leading contenders for the ITU world titles, and the world Mixed Relay title is up for grabs on Sunday.
Brownlee arrives in Hamburg in good shape following his withdrawal through illness at his home town race in Leeds last month.
He said: “I feel like I’m in good shape and ready to be competing here for the first time since 2014. I’m pleased to be back. My first event here was in 2006 as a junior, I won in 2013 and this is a great place to race. It’s a good course and it’s a great weekend of triathlon.”
Brownlee may be up against it to score enough Series points to challenge for the world title, but the Grand Final on the Gold Coast in September is a serious aim.
Tom Bishop is currently Britain’s top ranked athlete in the Series and showed that he’s in good form with a sixth place finish in Leeds last month. Grant Sheldon is the third British man in the start line as he builds up to the Glsgow 2018 European Championships next month.
There’s an exciting British women’s team in Hamburg. Olympic bronze medallist, Vicky Holland won in Leeds and was second in Bermuda. Another podium result here would see her become a factor in the world title race. However, defending champion, Flora Duffy will want to regain her position as the world’s leading female triathlete. 2018 has seen crashes and injury, but she dominated the Commonwealth Games and her home race in Bermuda.
Holland said: “Hamburg is a huge race where the crowds really push you round. I can’t wait to race, and I hope to continue my form from Bermuda and Leeds. I’ll take each race as it comes, but my focus is definitely to do as well as I can in the World Series.”
All races will be available live via the BBC Red Button and online. However, if you do miss them, there are highlights on Monday at 1pm on BBC2. Brownlee outlined that the races will be ‘short and fast and exciting.’ As a huge football fan, he added: “I hope that it’s a good weekend for British triathlon as it has been for English football.”
ITU World Triathlon Hamburg; 750m swim, 20km bike, 5km run; British triathletes racing in Hamburg & how to watch
Mixed Relay (1:30pm Sunday British time, BBC Red Button, select from blue menu key & online): Team TBC following individual races
Forthcoming ITU World Triathlon Series dates:
14 Jul: ITU World Triathlon Hamburg
15 July: ITU Triathlon Mixed Relay World Championships, Hamburg
27-29: Jul ITU World Triathlon Mixed Relay Series Edmonton
27-29: Jul ITU World Triathlon Edmonton
25-26: Aug ITU World Triathlon Montreal
12-16: Sep ITU World Triathlon Grand Final Gold Coast