Press Release - 2003 ITU St. Anthonys World Cup - Elite Men

Press Release - 2003 ITU St. Anthonys World Cup - Elite Men

By ITU Admin on 26/04/03 at 12:00 am

ITU Media   Release: 26 April 2003

Tim Don   Wins His First World Cup in St. Anthony’s.

The 2 lap swim   section of the mens event illustrated the talent of the 75 strong field   as more than 50 competitors were out of the water within a minute of Frank Bignet   of France who led the swim and exited the 1500m course in 17:55. He was followed   closely by Shane Reed of New Zealand, Joachim Willen of Sweden, Simon Lessing   of Great Britain, and Stephane Poulat also of France.

Once onto the 9-lap   bike course, a large, fast group manipulated the twists and turns of the 9-lap   40km bike course with a certain degree of grace and dexterity. Matt Reed of   New Zealand, who exited the swim in 53rd position, but who posted the fastest   transition was the first one to play the role of brave heart by   trying to break off the front. He was followed by Doug Friman of the USA, Jose   Merchan of Spain and Richard Allen of Great Britain. At one point Reed had a   10 second lead on the 50 athletes chasing him. By the latter stages of the bike   segment, Friman, Merchan and Allen also were able to shake off the big group   and they joined Matt Reed at the front.

The chase group   was led by Brian Fleischmann of the USA, Simon Lessing of Great Britain, newcomer   Andy Potts of the USA, Ritchie Cunningham of Australia and the current World   Champion, Ivan Rana of Spain.

Jose Merchan was   the first one off his bike and through transition onto the 4-lap, 10km runcourse,   followed by Matt Reed, Doug Friman and Richard Allen. The chase pack of multitudes   blew through transition almost 20 seconds back, setting things up for a very   interesting run segment and finish.

Merchan held on   valiantly as long as he could during the first 5000m, but the cunning fox-like   Greg Bennett and veteran Volodymyr Polikarpenko of the Ukraine quietly moved   through the field to take control of the race. They were joined by Frederic   Belaubre of France, the 2000 World Junior Champion.

For lap 3, Bennett   and Polikarpenko ran shoulder-to-shoulder, leading everyone to believe that   the two would lead down to the wire it was not to be. Great Britains   Tim Don came through with the 2nd fastest run split of the day, just as he did   last year in Alpharetta where he won the World Duathlon Championships. In the   dying moments of the event, Don pushed past Bennett and Polikarpenko, and neither   had enough in the tank to meet the challenge. 11 seconds was all that separated   Vlodymyr Polikarpenko and Tim Don at the finish. Greg Bennett was 3rd, 4 seconds   behind Polikarpenko. Frederic Belaubre of France was 4th and Maik Pezold of   Germany was 5th an impressive five different flags in the top 5.

An interesting   fact about the mens results is that for the first time, all finishers   were within the 5% cut-off to earn valuable World Ranking points. The pace is   quickening, and our athletes are getting faster and faster - 14 countries were   represented in the Top 25 finisher, with less than 2 minutes separating from   1st to 15th.

The World Cup Circuit   takes several weeks off now and will pick up again on June 8th in Tongyeong,   Korea, and Gamagori, Japan on June 15.
 

Find more details about this event - 2003 St. Petersburg ITU Triathlon World Cup

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