Murray earns first Cozumel World Cup win
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Ending his ITU season on a high note, Richard Murray (RSA) gets to finish his season with a gold medal after securing a victory at the 2015 Cozumel ITU World Cup.
The win was a first time for Murray in the Mexican city, but also granted him his fourth consecutive ITU podium after taking home the bronze at the Rio Test Event, WTS Edmonton and at the WTS Grand Final in Chicago earlier this year.
“The swim felt pretty good. I thought I was in a good position in the swim, until I got onto the bike and saw 50 bikes there and that is normally not a good sign,” said Murray of his winning performance. “I was thinking on the run that I could finish the season off with a run if I don’t blow up here on the run. But I felt great on the bike and managed to pull it together. I am happy with the race, I am very happy to race in Cozumel and get the win.”
Earning his first podium of the year, the silver medal went to Canadian Kyle Jones. Following in third place was Gabor Faldum (HUN), who walked away with his second consecutive World Cup podium after earning the silver in Tizsaujvaros.
Jones said of his first podium race, “I was very happy with my swim, I was right up there with the leaders in the beginning so I didn’t have to chase down on the bike, I fell back a little bit in the pack and so came into transition down a little bit. On the first lap I had to make up quite a bit of ground, but tried to stay as cool as I could because I knew I would need it on the second lap. But felt strong and put a surge in with about 800 metres to go it paid off.”
“I am very happy, I normally do not race well in this heat, so I am really happy because I got on the podium. My main goal was to make the top ten, so it was a big surprise for me, said Faldum.
The conditions were near perfect for the men’s race as the paradise island rose to the occasion in providing a grand backdrop to start off the competition. After the pontoon swim start into the ocean, the athletes made their way into the Marina Fonatur. Andrea Salvisberg (SUI) commanded the 750 metre swim leg and led out of the water. With the short distance not allowing for much separation, Murray found himself among the middle of the pack that would follow into the first transition.
With only four laps on the bike, after lap one, no standout leaders were able to form and a large peloton tallying 63-strong rode on. All big names rode together then, which included Murray, Jones, Faldum, Crisanto Grajales (MEX), Jason Wilson (BAR), Joe Maloy (USA), Kevin McDowell (USA) and Irving Perez (MEX). The distance left not many able to separate themselves from the gigantic pack and it carried for the entirety of the discipline and into the second transition.
Murray was able to avoid the chaos of the second transition zone by wearing the No.1 and headed out onto the run in the lead.
From there the run path was claimed by Murray as he pulled away for a solo run and brought himself into the finish line with a lead of over ten seconds.
Jones came in in second place after being further down after the bike. Surging forward in the last kilometre catapulted him to earn the silver.
Faldum followed shortly after to take home the bronze. A consistent performance from the Hungarian granted him his second podium placement.