“It was paramount I did well today for selection really and it’s boosted my confidence after a tough couple of years,” said Stanford. “The hill was pretty tough, there’s no two ways about it. We have smaller gearing on our bikes to help us get up. Great fast technical descent, I really enjoyed it. I think that tested a few people. All in all, it was a fantastic day and now I need to keep my head down and work towards Chicago.”
The men’s race got underway shortly afterwards, with two groups forming on the one-lap ocean swim at Copacabana Beach. Among the lead group were Richard Varga (SVK), Henri Schoeman (RSA) and a string of French men including Luis, Dorian Coninx (FRA) and Pierre Le Corre (FRA) exiting the water first, along with Gomez and Luis.
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Alistair Brownlee swam and biked superbly, sticking with the lead group in both legs and putting himself in a very strong position for a medal as he left T2. However, he struggled with an ankle injury on the run and had to ease off on the last lap.
Gomez and Luis forged ahead to close in on gold and silver, while Murray worked hard to claw back lost time and take bronze. Brownlee finished tenth, and GB’s Adam Bowden managed to finish 12th after putting in a strong run.
Men’s podium, left to right: Vincent Luis, Javier Gomez, Richard Murray
Brendan Purcell, performance director at British Triathlon, said: “Alistair wanted to hang on to third place but his injury let him down today. His swim and bike showed again that can get into a winning position and he almost held on, so although it wasn’t the result he wanted, there were a lot of positives.
“It’s been a good event overall, but obviously disappointing for some. Everyone has taken full advantage of the opportunity to experience what next year might be like.”
Women’s top ten
1. Gwen Jorgensen (USA) 01:58:46
2. Non Stanford (GBR) 01:59:05
3. Vicky Holland (GBR) 01:59:27
4. Sarah True (USA) 01:59:46
5. Barbara Riveros (CHI) 02:00:08
6. Katie Zaferes (USA) 02:00:26
7. Anne Haug (GER) 02:00:57
8. Annamaria Mazzetti (ITA) 02:01:00
9. Rachel Klamer (NED) 02:01:01
10. Jodie Stimpson (GBR) 02:01:04
Men’s top ten
1. Javier Gomez Noya (ESP) 01:48:26
2. Vincent Luis (FRA) 01:48:40
3. Richard Murray (RSA) 01:49:01
4. David Hauss (FRA) 01:49:32
5. Dmitry Polyanskiy (RUS) 01:49:32
6. Aaron Royle (AUS) 01:49:34
7. Mario Mola (ESP) 01:49:37
8. Igor Polyanskiy (RUS) 01:49:41
9. Joao Silva (POR) 01:49:46
10. Alistair Brownlee (GBR) 01:49:54
(Images: Delly Carr / Werner Araujo)
What did you think of the races? Let us know in the comments below!