A great effort from Jodie Stimpson saw her move up the ITU World Triathlon Series rankings after a fourth place finish in Hamburg. The sprint races were filled with drama, and saw some new names graced the podium in the final test before attentions turn to Rio.
The women’s race saw a strong start for Britain’s Lucy Hall, but Helen Jenkins lost her goggles and she and Jodie Stimpson were off the pace at the start of the bike. Hall maintained a lead with a small group whilst the rest of Britain’s athletes cycled with a large group including the ITU World Champion, Gwen Jorgensen (USA).
At the start of the run, Katie Zaferes (USA) and Rachel Klamer (NED) distanced themselves from the rest of the field, with Jorgensen more than 40 seconds back. Stimpson followed Jorgensen, showing great commitment, which was rewarded with fourth place. Jorgensen ran through to third, but wasn’t able to catch Zaferes, who achieved her first ever Series win. Klamer was second.
Helen Jenkins finished 14th, acknowledging afterwards that sprint-distance racing isn’t her forte. She will now prepare for Rio, a much tougher and full-distance course, from her base in Bridgend.
The grey weather turned to rain for the men’s race, making conditions challenging on the bike in particular. Britain’s duo of Adam Bowden and Tom Bishop struggled as Mario Mola (ESP) claimed the victory.
Richard Murray (RSA) crossed the line second but was disqualified for unsportsmanlike conduct, handing silver and bronze to Jake Birtwistle (AUS) and Fernando Alarza (ESP).
British Triathlon Performance Director, Brendan Purcell said: “Jodie raced strongly today and it was great to see her challenge Jorgensen at the start of the run.”
Stimpson moves up to second place in the Series rankings, giving herself every opportunity to challenge for the ITU world title in Mexico at the end of the season. Jonathan Brownlee is ranked third, despite not racing today in favour of training at altitude in St. Moritz in preparation for the Olympic Games.
Attentions now turn to Rio, where the men will race on 18 August followed by the women on 20 August.
Results; ITU World Triathlon Hamburg; 750m swim, 20km bike, 5km run:
1. Katie Zaferes, USA, 57:03
2. Rachel Klamer, NED, 57:14
3. Gwen Jorgensen, USA, 57:29
4. Jodie Stimpson, GBR, 57:52
14. Helen Jenkins, GBR, 58:14
20. Lucy Hall, GBR, 58:26
41. India Lee, GBR, 59:20
44. Sophie Coldwell, GBR, 59:45
ITU World Triathlon Series Rankings:
1. Flora Duffy, BER, 3491
2. Jodie Stimpson, GBR, 3146
3. Gwen Jorgensen, USA, 3025
1. Mario Mola, ESP, 3833
2. Fernando Alarza, ESP, 3443
3. Jonathan Brownlee, GBR, 2905