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Double Olympic medallist Bevan Docherty of New Zealand picked up where he left off in 2007, by winning gold in the Edmonton ITU Triathlon World Cup on Sunday.
“This course seems to treat me well. I enjoy racing here,” said Docherty. “I guess this is very similar to New Zealand weather so I’m used to it. But the reality is I am starting to hit good shape and I’m just happy with how things are going.”
Also finishing on the podium was silver medallist Aurelien Lescure of France, who scored his first World Cup medal. Triple Olympian Hunter Kemper of the U.S., who has been making resurgent strides this year on the circuit, took bronze.
A total of 76 men began the race with a 2-lap wetsuit swim in the Hawrelak Park lake. Docherty, along with Aaron Royle, Gavin Noble, Kemper, Peter Kerr, Kyle Jones and Simon Whitfield stormed into the first transition and were first out on the bike course going into the first lap. The lead group of 45 men kept the first chase group at bay by approximately 45 seconds throughout the six laps and kept within tight proximity of each other.
A second chase group wasn’t able to make up ground and trailed by over two minutes throughout the bike stage. As they entered the second transition, Kemper was the first off the bike and onto the 10km run course.
Early in the run Docherty and Lescure separated themselves from the field and jockeyed for top position throughout most of the run. Jones, Kemper and Whitfield stayed close through the late stages as they entered the final stretch.
Docherty surged ahead of Lescure as they neared the finish chute to secure his fifth career World Cup title. Kemper maintained his stride and kept his lead over Jones for the bronze.
“Four weeks out from our selection race which is in London,” said Docherty. “It is just reassuring to know that all the training that I’ve been doing is starting to pay off.”
For Lescure, the day was perfect.
“I am very happy (with) this race. This is my best race on the World Cup so I am very happy. I trained very hard for this and it’s a good gift for me,” said Lescure.
Kemper, whose sights are now set on London in four weeks, holds this race close to his heart.
“The fan support is great, the people come out. It’s quite a good race. It’s an easy travel trip for me coming straight from Colorado Springs. Edmonton always comes out and supports this race,” said Kemper.
Jones tied his career best World Cup performance with a fourth place showing.
Crisanto Grajales of Mexico finished up in fifth position after laying down a scorching run to move ahead of Whitfield late in the run. The Canadian star Whifield crossed the line in sixth place.