Willian wears the one as world title race and Olympic form chase heads to Hamburg

10 July, 2024 | español

Willian wears the one as world title race and Olympic form chase heads to Hamburg

From launching genuine world championship title bids to sharpening the skills that could help snare an Olympic gold at the end of the month, Saturday’s 2024 World Triathlon Championship Series Hamburg is set to be another Hanseatic classic.

This will be the 23rd consecutive year that Hamburg has hosted top-tier triathlon on its streets, a remarkable sequence that speaks not just to the popularity of the race among athletes and fans, but the unerring commitment of the city to this great sport and its part in the development of great German athletes consistently hitting the podium here.

Once again it will be a sprint-distance affair, the 750m swim returning towards land via the infamous 40m section of darkness under the bridge at the southern end of the Binnenalster lake. From there, its a tight, technical 20km bike across six laps before the decisive 5km (2-lap) run to the tape.

Watch all the action from 1.50pm on Saturday 13 July on TriathlonLive.tv.

Willian wears the won

For the first time in his career, 27-year-old Luke Willian will wear the coveted number one in a Series race, marking the Australian’s timely rise to form so far in 2024. If there was little doubt about his ability heading in to 2024, it was the World Cup win in Wollongong followed by WTCS Yokohama bronze that have hammered home his potential for a big season.

Yokohama also ensured his place in Paris on 30 July, allowing Willian the freedom to prepare at his own pace for a huge couple of months into the Games. Coupled with an 8th-place in Cagliari, Willian finds himself Series leader heading to Hamburg and seemingly relishing the chance to shine once again.

Luis with a point to prove

In what he has said will be his final year on the blue carpet, Vincent Luis returns to Hamburg for the 11th time in the French star’s illustrious career. Two golds and three silvers to his name here, Luis will stand on the start line with wounds to heal after missing out on selection for a home Games. Expect aggression, determination and a big showing from the two-time world champion in his Hamburg swansong.

On the opposite end of the Hamburg scale, this will be American number one Morgan Pearson’s fourth time racing here, having previously finished 46th (2018), 8th (2020) and 31st (2023). Winner of the season opener in Yokohama and 40th in Cagliari, it is that hitherto missing consistency that he will want to bring from here to Paris as he mounts a serious bid for the world and Olympic titles.

With five top-5 finishes out of his last seven Series races, Australian Matthew Hauser also took silver here back in 2022 and is setting himself some serious Olympic targets for Paris. Silver in Yokohama two months ago, another podium here would also establish Hauser as a serious challenger for the world title.

Rising stars seek defining moment

Alberto Gonzalez Garcia will be one to watch for Spain in only his second Hamburg hit out. Having had to wait patiently for regular Series starts, some eye-catching runs helped secure his place in Paris, including during a career-best 11th in Cagliari at the end of May and debut World Cup win in Hong Kong.

Of the three German men heading to Paris, Lasse Luhrs will be the only one in Hamburg, giving the likes of Henry Graf and Jan Diener a chance to shine. Pierre le Corre leads the line for France after top 6 in his comeback race in Cagliari secured a Paris start, while Portugal’s Vasco Vilaca will be looking to put the crash in Yokohama firmly behind him and deliver another fiery finish like we saw here a year ago on route to silver. After four Series podiums and silver in the Paris Test Event, a first Series win would do wonders for his Olympic build up.

Plenty of past Series podium power will be eyeing a return to glory this weekend, including Jelle Geens of Belgium, Canada’s Tyler Mislawchuk, Manoel Messias of Brazil, Netherlands’ Richard Murray and the Moroccan who lit up the 2022 edition, Jawad Abdelmoula. The next generation also gets its shot in the form of Series debutants Mathis Beaulieu (CAN) and reigning Junior World Champion (on this very course) Joao Nuno Batista (POR).

13 May, 1.50pm local time


vincent luis luke willian wtcs hamburg

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2024 World Triathlon Championship Series Hamburg

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