Very short (300m swim, 6.6km, 2km walk etc) and frequent runs (three times only ten minutes): Round 3 of the World Triathlon Series, weekend, Montreal, it was truly amazing! With slight differences in the finish due to the sheer quality of the athletes … On Friday, five Belgians managed to qualify for the apotheosis: Martin van Riel, Jill Jens, Erwin Vanderblanc, Claire Michel and Valerie Barthelemy. Brilliantly for some, stubbornly for others.
And so, Martin and Erwin had to go through with the edits, which is an extra step! By both placing fourth in their series, they were joined by fellow Belgian Hammers.
With thirty competitors starting, the final took place in three stages, by elimination. The first to fall was Erwin Vanderplancke, 23 in the first heat, eight seconds out of the top 20, led by… Jelly Janes, Martin van Riel taking ninth. Then the thrill rose a few notches to be among the ten lucky winners. If Brazil’s Messias had provided an honorary victory against New Zealand’s Wilde and Britain’s Yee, Geely placed fifth and Martin…10th, in the sprint and photo finish with Australia’s Copeland!
Two Belgians among the top ten!
The Final Finals It was really cool when four athletes got off, best of the moment, on foot. Alex Yee was the one who won by just three seconds over Hayden Wilde and Frenchman Berger, while Gilly Jeans finished fourth. A little later, Martin van Riel was left behind, but he made a bid at the straight end, crossing the line for ninth.
Calf pain by Claire Michel
On the women’s front, Claire Michel and Valerie Barthelemy unfortunately did not survive in the first of the three rounds of the Women’s Final. Valerie finished 25th and Claire unfortunately retired after swimming due to a relapse of her calf injury. The Brussels woman in Sunday’s mixed relay will be replaced by Hane de Wit, who is out of qualifying, just like Noah Servier.
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