Sabato 28 Aprile la World Triathlon Series riparte da Bermuda. Dopo la tappa inaugurale di Abu Dhabi, il massimo circuito mondiale che assegnerà il titolo iridato a fine anno tocca una località inedita per la seconda tappa del calendario 2018 su distanza olimpica: mare cristallino, si nuota al porto di Hamilton (Capitale dell'Isola), zona nevralgica della città, si pedala su Cork Screw e si corre tra Front Street e Barnaby Street, a pochi metri da mare.
A difendere i colori della nazionale italiana ci saranno Alessandro Fabian (C.S. Carabinieri), al via col numero 14, che torna in gara in WTS dopo il 18° posto negli Emirati Arabi, e Alice Betto (G.S. Fiamme Oro), terza a Leeds lo scorso anno, al debutto stagionale (partirà con il numero 24). A supporto degli atleti azzurri ci sono Joel Filliol, Olympic Performance Director della Fitri, e Jose Miota, fisioterapista.
Per quanto riguarda la prova femminile, occhi e riflettori puntati sulla beniamina di casa Flora Duffy, campionessa mondiale in carica che non vorrà perdere l'opportunità di festeggiare davanti al pubblico amico il primo successo in WTS del 2018 (ad Abu Dhabi fu fermata da una caduta). Al via le big Rachel Klamer (Ned), a segno nella prima gara mondiale dell'anno, le americane Kirsten Kasper, Taylor Spivey, Katie Zaferes e Summer Cook, la canadese Joanna Brown, le britanniche Vicky Holland e Jodie Stimpson e la portoghese Melanie Santos. In ambito maschile, c'è grande attesa per Henri Schoeman, il sudafricano a segno nella precedente tappa di WTS e ai Giochi del Commonwealth, ma dovrà vedersela con l'agguerrito iridato in carica Mario Mola (Esp); fitta la pattuglia francese con Vincent Luis, Leo Bergere e Pierre La Corre, ma attenzione a Richard Murray (Saf), Tyler Mislawchuk (Can), Kristian Blummenfelt (Nor), Joao Silva (Por) e Fernando Alarza.
Tracciati di gara spettacolari e selettivi. Per quanto riguarda la frazione di nuoto da 1500 metri, sono previsti due giri, il primo da 700 metri, il secondo da 800; in bici si completeranno 10 giri da 4 km ciascuno con diverse difficoltà planimetriche come curve molto stretta e successivi rilanci e un'altimetria non estremamente selettiva ma mossa e insidiosa; infine la corsa, un circuito da 2.5 km da ripetere 4 volte.
Lla gara maschile partirà alle 13.06 ora locale (18.06 in Italia), quella femminile alle 16.06 (21.06 in Italia).
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Sito ufficiale: https://bermuda.triathlon.org
The World Triathlon Series will stop for the first time in Bermuda for the second race of the 2018 season. Home of World Champion Flora Duffy, the iconic island will welcome amateurs and elite athletes this weekend for four days of triathlon races for all ages and categories, and with the Elite ones going for the first Olympic distance race of the season. Welcome to the 2018 MS Amlin World Triathlon Bermuda.
With Flora toeing the start line, it is most likely that most of the 65,000 people who call themselves Bermudians will, in fact, be ready to cheer for her this Saturday. Even though the course looks like a perfect fit for probably the strongest rider of the pack, she will have some fierce competitors trying to call themselves the first ever winners of WTS Bermuda.
“It is a dream come true to have a WTS race in Bermuda, and I can’t wait to get to the start line”, said the proud Bermudian, who has been focussed not only on training in the last few days, but also on giving advises to all triathletes coming to her home place on how to enjoy the island for a few days.
Strangely for her, Flora won’t be wearing the golden number 1 bib here, as she crashed in the first WTS of the season in Abu Dhabi, but will give it all to leave Bermuda with the winner trophy.
That number golden number 1 swim cap will be this time for Rachel Klamer, who earned her first-ever WTS victory in Abu Dhabi, and who is more than willing to prove that that was not by chance. Over the Olympic distance, the Dutch will be able to show her bike skills and her improved run that put her as one of the ones to watch in Bermuda.
Excitement is probably the feeling most of the athletes have with the challenging and impressive course around Hamilton, proving that new cities are always welcomed by triathletes. “I"m super excited to be racing at a new venue and a place I’ve never been that looks gorgeous. It’s made even more meaningful because my family will be there watching, plus my dad, my husband Tommy, and my uncle will all be racing in the morning before the elite races”, explained Katie Zaferes (USA), herself one of the favourites to be in the top group. The tough bike course will be indeed the perfect scenario for the American to try to push for a breakaway.
52 men will be toeing the start line in Hamilton, for a swim in the crystal clear turquoise Atlantic, followed by a bike leg over steep hills and along beautiful stretches of picturesque coastline.
One of the ones to watch this Saturday will be indeed Henri Schoeman. The South African, who will be wearing the golden number 1, is on fire this season, after claiming the victory in the Commonwealth Games in Gold Coast only three weeks ago, and claiming also the first WTS of the season, with a solid win in Abu Dhabi. “I’m excited to race in a new country and on a new course”, he told ITU a few days before the race. “I believe it’s going to be a difficult bike and run course which I think is great! I’ve had a great start to the season and I don’t want to put any pressure on myself, I’m just going to enjoy it and give it my best”.
Schoeman showed both in Abu Dhabi and in Gold Coast that his biking skills, especially when raining, are impressive, and might be of great use also in Bermuda, where the weather forecast at the moment show high possibilities of rain during race day.
Spaniard Mario Mola, current double World Champion, is also “really looking forward this race, on a new venue and on a place where I’ve never been before”. “I am very happy with my training those last weeks, I had some solid blocks of training after Abu Dhabi, and I’m confident that I can perform as I want and execute a great race in Bermuda”, he explained from the airport hours before landing in the tiny island. Mola finished in second place in Abu Dhabi, but haven’t raced since then, beginning of March, focus on training.
Mola will be once more the Captain of the Spanish squad, with Fernando Alarza and Uxio Abuin Ares toeing the start line with him after Vicente Hernandez had to pull out last minute due to an injury.
(Fonte Foto: ITU)