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France’s David Hauss allowed his brilliant run to carry him to his career first ITU World Cup victory, after he made up a 50-second deficit from T2 to win the 2012 Ishigaki ITU Triathlon World Cup on Sunday. The other two podium spots were filled by a pair of breakthrough performances - Italy’s Davide Uccellari finished four seconds behind Hauss for silver while Gonzalo Raul Tellechea of Argentina took the bronze.
Hauss was among the leaders after the swim and was part of a seven-man breakaway that led the field for almost five laps. After being reeled in, another group of five surged away in the late stages of the bike leg and took a 50-second lead into T2. But the five weren’t in front for long as Hauss quickly overtook four members of that group, Cameron Good, Jack Hickey, Bruno Matheus and Kohei Shimomura.
It then just took him another five minutes to push past Ryosuke Yamamoto, and from there he cruised home for his first major ITU win. He said before the race his goal was to win, but he said afterwards it was actually taking the pressure off that allowed him to glide past the field.
“I did it, I said it yesterday and I did it today, for sure it’s a great day for me,” Hauss said. “I’m really happy to win this race, I was really pushing hard on the swim to try to breakaway and that’s what I did, then we worked really hard on the bike but behind was faster than us, so after the bike, I thought it would be really hard for me but I thought I’m not pressured so I have to try to go as fast as I can. I was in good shape and was flying, so after two laps I controlled the race, I really enjoyed the last lap. Finally I did it.”
While he comfortably ran away to the win, the battle for podium places behind Hauss became really interesting when Italy’s Davide Uccellari, Argentina’s Gonzalo Raul Tellechea, Germany’s Christian Prochnow, Ivan Ivanov, Reto Hug and Tyler Butterfield started to run through the field. It ended up being a breakthrough result for Uccellari, whose run split was even faster than Hauss’, at 30 minutes and 42 seconds, as he claimed silver.
“In the second part of the race I stayed in the first group in the bicycle I didn’t expend energy and in the run, I used all the energy I have,” he said. “The medal is a very nice present for me, for my family, for my my girl, for me team. For the Italian Federation. It is the best result of my life, after the second in the European Championship, but in the World Cup its the best result of my life.”
While Tellechea also claimed a career first with his bronze medal.
“I am very happy, it was the best race of my life, I never thought I could win this place but I just did my best,” he said.
The weather was warm by the time the men hit the water at 3.45pm local time in Ishigaki, and Richard Varga, Andrey Bryukhankov and Denis Vasiliev led out the first lap of two before a group of eight athletes exited the water within ten seconds of each other.
That group, that included Bryce McMaster, Hirokatsu Tayama, Hauss, Varga, Bruykhankov and Vasiliev, initially had a lead of 30 seconds but strong work from Hickey and Butterfield cut the lead each lap until they bridged the gap in lap five, creating a huge peloton of 50 athletes. That didn’t last long though, as Good, Hickey, Matheus and Shimomura made their break and quickly extended the lead to 50 seconds coming out of T2. It didn’t prove to be enough in the end though, as Yamamoto was the only member of that breakaway that finished in the top ten, with ninth.
It was a race full of breakthroughs though, as well as a first winner and two first-time medallists on the rest of the podium, it was the best career World Cup for Prochnow, Ivanov, Butterfield and Jason Wilson.
It’s the fifth ITU World Cup win in sixth months for France, after Jessica Harrison, Carole Peon and Etienne Diemunsch won in Tongyeong and Guatape respectively in 2011, while Laurent Vidal took out the season opening Mooloolaba ITU World Cup last month in Australia.