Photos: World Triathlon
By Kent Gray/Triathlon.kiwi in Hamburg
New Zealand are guaranteed at least two men in the Saturday’s top-30 shootout at the World Triathlon Sprint Championships with Hayden Wilde and Tayler Reid getting it one and done in Friday’s qualifiers.
Reid was 8th in Qualifier 1 while Wilde had to overcome a roughing in the 300m swim to advance from Qualifier 2.
Wilde was 22 seconds adrift of Australian Matt Hauser out of the water but craftily tagged onto the wheel of Norwegian star Kristian Blummenfelt on the 7.5km bike to bridge the gap. The Kiwi No.1 then comfortably ran to second place behind Blummenfelt with Hauser rounding out the top three.
The top-10 in each heat advanced directly to Saturday’s (early Sunday NZT) three-stage finals where the worst 10 in each heat drop out to leave 10 racing for the super-sprint title.
Saxon Morgan, Dylan McCullough and Janus Staufenberg will all have to go through Friday night’s (early Saturday NZT) repechages if they are to advance.
Morgan was 28th out of 30 in Qualilier 1 and McCullough and Staufenberg 19th and 29th respectively on Qualifer 2 but all three took the foot off the gas after it became apparent they wouldn’t make the top 10.
McCullough started well to be fourth out of the water and was at the pointy end on the bike only to fade on the run and opt to save battery power for the repechage.
Nicole van der Kaay, Olivia Thornbury (Qualifier 1), Ainsley Thorpe and Brea Roderick (Qualifier 2) hoped to qualify directly later on Friday evening NZ time.
As for the men, there are also two fallback repechage races for the women with five from each to advance.
After the super sprint titles are decided, Hamburg will also play host to the World Triathlon Relay Championships on Sunday (early Monday NZT). New Zealand can automatically book a relay slot for the Paris Olympic Games, plus two male and two female individual starts as a result, providing they finish top nation in Hamburg, not counting France and GBR who have already qualified.