Athletes talk world’s toughest triathlon

Athletes talk world’s toughest triathlon

By Erin Greene on 05/07/13 at 7:02 pm

With just hours left until probably the world’s toughest triathlon debuts in Kitzbühel, athletes facing the grueling climb shared their thoughts on the course with media. With feelings ranging from excitement to nervousness and everything in between, these elites are set to grind it out tomorrow.

Alistair Brownlee
On Kitzbühel being the toughest triathlon in the world
“I haven’t done every race in the world, so I’m not really qualified to say. But it is quite a tough triathlon. It’s fantastic to do something different. Whether it is the toughest race in the world, I think it’s pretty high up there. It’s something different and very fun. It should provide a spectacle and some interesting results.”

On his thoughts on the course
“Every time I’ve come to Kitzbühel in the last four years I’ve said, ‘We come to the Alps and don’t do any hills, why is that?’ So at first I thought, ‘I’m glad it’s going up a hill,’ and then I thought, ‘Oh now that it goes up hill, I have to do well because I’ve asked for a hill the last four years.’ I think it’s what the World Triathlon Series needs. It’s really fantastic for Kitzbühel to show off the surroundings and show off the natural things it has around it.”

Javier Gomez
On winning the World Championship title
“Yea, of course I’d like to win the title again. There are still three races to go but this is a very important one. This is a very special race. I’m not thinking about the series, it’s just a very nice race and very tough. I like climbing as well, so I’m looking forward to it. I think it’s a challenge for all the athletes and we are all happy for it. Maybe we won’t say the same tomorrow but we are all really excited to do it. It’s going to be a good show for everyone.”

On his relationship with the Brownlee brothers
“We race together, we share the same team in France. It’s good. Obviously when we are racing we just try to beat each other. They both are really talented, as are a lot of athletes. They are really hard to beat. It’s a challenge for everyone to be in the front.”

Non Stanford
On her successful season
“Yea it’s been pretty surprising to be honest with you. I started the year in good shape, but I never had the confidence to say I could even podium. I thought it was something that was unattainable. Obviously doing it the first time helps your confidence. Then going into Madrid, I knew I could do it so that helped. I just need to keep it going and ride the wave.”

On her expectations for the race
“Everyone in the start line is going in with a level playing field because we don’t really know what the other is going to do. We’ve never raced on this type of course. Anne is a fantastic cyclist, so I think all eyes will be on her. But who knows what anybody will do. It’s exciting for the athletes, exciting for the spectators as well.”

Anne Haug
On being favoured in the women’s race
“I was quite excited to see the hill before the race. I think it’s important to see what it’s like. It’s really challenging. I’m quite excited, but I have a lot of respect as well. To be honest, everyone expects me to be good. But I’m not superwoman, I’m a human as well. I think it’s about finding your own pace, don’t get confused with what everyone else is doing. If you go too far, you will pop and it will be over. I can’t say what will happen because it’s so new and I think everyone is a little bit scared.”

Find more details about this event - 2013 ITU World Triathlon Kitzbuehel