Sunny and fairly hot conditions welcomed the athletes in Eilat. After the huge race on Friday (with 1400 Age-Group and Kids athletes) on Saturday it was the day of the elites. Small, but good field assembled together for the last Triathlon event in Europe for 2005.
Benjamin Sanson of France led through the opening 2-lap swim section and then got on the bike for the 40km bike segment as a leader.
Meanwhile the chase pack was trying to make up lost ground and they caught Sanson on the first lap of the 5-lap bike segment. The group of nine athletes besides Sanson included Rasmus Henning from Denmark, Kris Gemmell from New Zealand, Daniel Unger from Germany, Gavin Noble from Ireland, Gerald Horvath from Austria and three local heroes the Alterman brothers Dan, Ran and Or Berger. Later Sanson dropped out from this group and Dan Alterman made a successful attempt to escape on the lead. He managed to maintain his lead till the end of the bike and he got to the second Transition with more than a minute lead over the chasers.
Henning and Gemmell were really keen to catch Alterman and came closer and closer lap by lap on the spectacular 7 laps run course. After three laps Alterman still had over half a minute lead but Henning was the only one by then to get closer and closer to him. By the end of the 5th lap it was more and more clear that the former European Champion and World Cup winner will overtake the local heroes sadly for the many Team Alterman lined the course.
As the top favourite of the race, Henning won the last stage of the ITU European Cup circuit by 15 seconds ahead of Dan Alterman. His brother Ran came on the third sprinted out the kiwi Kris Gemmell. Daniel Unger finished 5th.
Rasmus Henning won the overall European Cup title by winning the race.
As they could increase their lead against the chasers included Mieke Suys from Belgium and Nina Pekerman from Israel, it was no question any more that Cave and Hewitt will run for the first and second position.
Cave took a 20 seconds lead in the first kilometres of the run and she was able to keep this distance ahead of Hewitt. The former European Cup winner Mieke Suys came third and this meant that she won the European Cup overall title again in 2005.
The traditional VVIP of the event, cycling Champion Eddie Merckx presented the medals to the best athletes of the day. The beautiful city of Eilat proved again that it is ideal for Triathlon and hopefully the circuit will come back again in the next years.
One behalf of the whole ETU Council and Staff thank you for your participation and attention in 2005. Have a good rest, preparation and see you all in 2006!!!
|Results: Elite Men|