IOC boss Bach likes it: Triathlon format at the World Cup is popular
For the second time, world titles in triathlon will be awarded in Eliminator format. The spectators in Hamburg like it, including IOC boss Thomas Bach. Nevertheless, the format will not become Olympic so quickly.
Hamburg (dpa/lno). Thousands of enthusiastic spectators, a lot of action in a short time – and an unusual challenge for the best triathletes in the world: At the World Championships in Hamburg, the still young sprint format of the world association ITU was well received. The head of the International Olympic Committee (IOC) also liked the spectacle on Saturday between the Binnenalster and Rathausmarkt.
“I think the new format has proven itself here,” said IOC President Thomas Bach in an ARD interview. “It’s interesting for the viewers. It is varied. The athletes have obviously embraced it. And the great Hamburg audience is doing its part.”
The spectators experienced three races each for women and men over the super sprint distance of 300 meters swimming, 7.5 kilometers cycling and 1.6 kilometers running on Saturday afternoon. In the eliminator format, ten of the 30 triathletes were eliminated after the first two rounds. The ten best then fought for the title at the end. The day before there had already been qualifying races and hope rounds to determine the 30 starters for Saturday.
Last year, world championship titles in the sprint were awarded in this format for the first time in Montreal, a year earlier there was a test event in the Canadian city. ITU President Marisol Casado hopes the format may be included in the Olympic program by Brisbane 2032.
However, IOC boss Bach was reticent about an Olympic future for the new format. “Triathlon is one of the few sports that has received an additional discipline thanks to its excellent performance. Now it’s time for a little break. And you can develop the format over time,” said the 69-year-old.
Triathlon has been an Olympic event since 2000. The individual distance consists of a 1.5 km swim, 40 km bike ride and 10 km run. The mixed relay has also been part of the program since the Olympic Games in Tokyo were postponed to 2021.
For the athletes, the demands are special due to the many races within a short period of time. Tim Hellwig spoke of “lactate showers”: “I have to honestly say that this is the toughest format I’ve done in triathlon so far,” said the 24-year-old from Neustadt an der Weinstrasse.
Hellwig was the only one of five German triathletes who had reached the final run of the top ten. He ended up eighth. Laura Lindemann secured a medal for the German Triathlon Union (DTU) with third place. Annika Koch from Darmstadt and Marlene Gomez-Göggel from Ulm finished fourth and fifth behind the woman from Potsdam. New Zealand’s Hayden Wild became world champion, while Frenchwoman Cassandre Beaugrand secured the women’s title.
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