By Erin Greene on 09/07/14 at 7:51 pm
In addition to the men’s and women’s elite sprint races and the 10,000 age group athletes that will compete as a part of the World Triathlon Hamburg this weekend, the fifth edition of the Mixed Relay World Championships will be contested on Sunday.
Germany surprised and impressed the hometown crowd last year when it came from behind in the final discipline of the woman-man-woman-man relay for their first-ever World Championship win. Their title made them just the third country to collect gold in the race.
History is on their side for a repeat win, as Mixed Relay titles seem to come in pairs with Switzerland having clenched wins in 2009 and 2010, while Great Britain took over in 2011 and 2012. However, it remains to be seen if Anne Haug or Jan Frodeno will line up for the Germans, meaning it could be difficult to fend off the Brits from a hat trick of titles.
With Olympic medallist brothers Alistair and Jonathan Brownlee on the relay, as well as top ranked Jodie Stimpson and Helen Jenkins, the British team possesses the most depth and experience. While the relay will be fielded by more individual talent at the Olympic distance level than any other team, that doesn’t necessarily translate to the speed needed for the 300m swim, 6.6km bike, 1.6km run. But if the Brits can pull off the feat, they’ll surpass Switzerland as the most successful team in Mixed Relay history.
Depending on who lines up for each Federation, which won’t be revealed until the day of the race, a number of teams could feature on the podium. Amongst those favoured are again New Zealand and the US, as well as the Australians.
For the first time, Spain could be poised to join the nine countries that have garnered a medal in the last four years with Javier Gomez Noya, Mario Mola, Ainhoa Murua and Carolina Routier capable of putting together significant performances over such a short distance.
The race will serve as an important tune-up for those nations competing in Glasgow at the end of the month where Mixed Relay will debut at the Commonwealth Games.
Find more details about this event - 2014 Hamburg ITU Triathlon Mixed Relay World Championships