Team England won silver behind Australia in the Mixed Relay on the Gold Coast. The team of Vicky Holland, Jonathan Brownlee, Jess Learmonth and Alistair Brownlee were pleased with their performance against a very strong Australian team. Wales were sixth and Scotland were seventh.
2018 Gold Coast Commonwealth Games RESULTS:
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Vicky Holland got the team off to a strong start, establishing a small lead before handing over to Jonathan Brownlee. The Australian team were right with them and Brownlee raced alongside Matt Hauser to put themselves well ahead of the rest of the field.
Jess Learmonth took on the third leg, drilling the swim and putting a clear distance between herself and Ashleigh Gentle. However, Gentle was excellent on the bike and is an outstanding runner. When Alistair Brownlee took to the final leg, Australia’s Jake Birtwhistle had a 39 second advantage.
Brownlee clawed some time back, but catching an athlete of the caliber of Birtwhistle would be impossible in almost any scenario.
Jonathan Bronwnlee said: “I thought that was very good today. We were always going to really struggle to beat the Australians. We couldn't have done much better than that, so we're happy.”
Jessica Learmonth was delighted to add Mixed Relay silver to her individual medal from Thursday. She said: “We finished off on a high. I think we did the best we could. I never thought I'd be coming away with two silver medals.”
Vicky Holland is already looking forward to more opportunities to compete in the Mixed Relay, including the ITU World Series event in Nottingham in June. She said: “I enjoy it, it's a fun event, I think it's the best one for spectators to watch. It's really important that we do more of these because it's going into the Olympics. There are more and more opportunities to do this, including in the UK. We'll only get better."
Alistair Brownlee is yet to make a decision on his Olympic future, but the Mixed Relay provides a big incentive. He said: “I'm not sure about the Olympics yet, end of this year and I'll decide. It's (Mixed Relay) another shot at a medal, a really really good shot at a medal, and we're going to absolutely be in the hunt for the gold medal in two years’ time.”
Team Wales performed really well to finish in sixth place. Non Stanford got the team off to a good start before handing over to Iestyn Harrett, Olivia Matthias and Chris Silver. Scotland were seventh with Beth Potter, Marc Austin, Erin Wallace and Grant Sheldon.