McMahon comes from behind for Tiszaujvaros World cup title
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Canadian veteran Brent McMahon snatched a resurgent victory today at the 2011 Tiszaujvaros ITU Triathlon World Cup.
In a thrilling final lap comeback, McMahon denied Great Britain’s Aaron Harris pole position and put to rest any disappointments over his failure to make the start list for last Sunday’s race at Hyde Park on the London 2012 Olympic course.
Harris, who made his World Cup debut last month in Edmonton with a 37th place finish, took second silver in just his second World Cup race.
Akos Vanek brought the Hungarian crowd to their feet with a bronze medal performance, 28 seconds behind the winner. That brought together six different flags for the two podiums for the men’s and women’s races.
Despite a strong Russian presence at the front throughout the race Igor Polyanskiy, who took the swim prime, missed out on a podium position after fading late in the run and finished 53 seconds behind McMahon.
These three controlled the front of the bike pack with Harris, Abrahm Louw (NAM), McMahon and Vanek in a tight race with only one second between the riders at times.
McMahon, who topped the 10km bike course with a time of 57 minutes and 59 seconds, used his bike skills for third position, going into the run behind Polyansky and Harris.
“All season I’ve been struggling with the start of my run and really building the back half, I went no harder this time but I still knew I had the back half to go,” said McMahon. “So at five K, I was like ‘let’s do this, let’s get into second place’. I picked the pace up and dropped the other guys on my shoulder and move into second place and then I was biding my time until first place.”
The Canadian pulled out all the stops in the final lap on the run, blistering past Harris and breaking the tape at 1 hour, 48 minutes, 16 seconds for his first career World Cup title. Harris followed seven seconds later for silver.
“I did everything I could and I got the win. I was just a little off the back a little bit of that front four or five guys, I did a non-drafting race last weekend where you had to just put your head down and hammer so that’s what I did I caught the front four guys and three others. We had a wicked group of three guys working well together.”
Vanek had the home crowds in a frenzy as he hung on for the bronze, becoming the first Hungarian to make the podium in Tiszaujvaros since 2000.
Polyanskiy finished up in fourth while Mexico’s Crisanto Grajales burned up the run course, recording the day’s fastest split to move up into fifth place.
Spain’s three-time Olympian Ivan Rana couldn’t match the pace set by the front runners in the second pack and finished 32nd overall.
Three-time Olympian Reto Hug (SUI), who didn’t race in London but finished eighth in Hamburg, failed to make it past the fifth bike lap.
Joao Pereira (POR), who finished London last weekend with a 15th position, only managed a 21st spot.
Africa was well represented, with a contingent that included the new men’s African champion Richard Murray (RSA), Zimbabwe’s Christopher Felgate, Medhi Essadiq (MAR) and Namibia’s Louw. Although Louw, an ITU Development athlete, managed to keep pace with the swim and bike leaders, he struggled with the run and finished 39th.
Murray came in a eighth place, the best World Cup result of his career.
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