By Chelsea White on 02/09/15 at 2:14 am
The World Triathlon Series is coming to the Americas, as Edmonton, Canada becomes the ninth stop in the 2015 circuit. After hosting the Grand Final last year, Edmonton is set to serve up a sprint course this year. As the last race before the 2015 Grand Final, the elite women are looking to earn some last-chance ITU points.
Great Britain has come prepared to seize that podium by bringing two of its leading ladies. Vicky Holland and Non Stanford grace the start list and based on their recent performances in the triathlon season, it is very likely that one or potentially both will be earning an Edmonton medal.
Both Holland and Stanford have reached a WTS podium this season. Holland won gold in Cape Town, while also adding a silver to her collection in Hamburg. Stanford joined her in Hamburg by taking home the bronze medal. Both women also secured step one of a two-step process for qualifying for the 2016 Rio de Janeiro Olympic team for their federation by making podium in the Rio Test Event in August. Step two could be accomplished by reaching the podium at the Grand Final in Chicago.
They’ll be joined by two-time World Champion Helen Jenkins. While Jenkins endured an injury that saw her sidelined for most of the 2015 season, she looks ready to return in fighting form.
Lining up with No. 1 next to her name for the first time this season is Rachel Klamer (NED). While she has yet to step into the WTS spotlight this season, she has succeeded in making a name for herself in the European competitions. She was second in the Baku European Games and also tallied a victory at the Holten ETU Triathlon Premium European Cup while etching out consistent performances in Series races.
Flora Duffy (BER) carried on a breakthrough consistent season in Stockholm when she scored her third top 5 WTS finish of the year. Duffy’s tenacity on the bike is unmatched and will be the key for the Berumuda athlete to score a second podium this weekend.
The Aussies will also have a strong showing in Canada. Emma Moffatt and Ashleigh Gentle are tough competitors and are ones to look out for. Both women made podium in Yokohama with Gentle earning the silver, while Moffatt took the bronze. Gentle will be further boosted by the fact she won the Edmonton World Cup back in 2011.
Emma Jackson is another Aussie to watch, as is Olympic bronze medallist Erin Densham. Plagued with injury and illness since 2012, Densham showed signs of a return to form with her finishes in London and Stockholm. Aussie women have claimed five World Cup titles in Edmonton, suggesting this is their course to defend.
The United States women have no doubt been the dominate force this season, frontrunners Gwen Jorgensen, Sarah True and Katie Zaferes have all opted out of competing this weekend, leaving Edmonton completely up for grabs.
Click here for the men’s start list
The men’s race will be held on Sunday, September 6 at 3:35pm. To watch the race live, tune in at triathlonlive.tv. For live updates, follow us on twitter at @triathlonlive.
Find more details about this event - 2015 ITU World Triathlon Edmonton