High winds in Spain meant Sunday’s Challenge Salou 2021 on the Costa Durada was a ‘no swim’ affair.
In its place, we had another 5km run to start – everyone was going to be doing the du(athlon), certainly not the news that the likes of Lucy Hall wanted to wake up to on Sunday morning!
PRO Men – Collins Cup Collin runs to title
After a 30-minute delay to racing as organisers implemented plan B, the opening 5km run didn’t do too much to separate the field.
New Zealand’s Kyle Smith took an early lead on the bike, but the star on two wheels would be Germany’s Frederic Funk, the European Middle Distance champion this year. Powering through the wind on the three-lap course, he built a T2 advantage of almost three minutes over Collin Chartier (USA).
Outlaw Half Nottingham winner Josh Lewis was performing well, fourth into transition a couple of minutes later (not too far behind Smith), shortly to be followed by the main chase pack.
Chartier set off in chase of the German – he was moving really well and making light of that deficit.
Funk faded out of the top 10 by the finish, which allowed the Team USA Collins Cup athlete to take the tape two-and-a-half minutes clear of Jorik van Egdom (NED). van Egdom is a former European Junior Duathlon champion, and was part of the excellent Netherlands Triathlon Mixed Relay squad which finished fourth in Tokyo. He was competing in, I think, his first middle-distance race.
Robbie Deckard made it two US athletes on the podium, running through to third.
It was a victory tinged with sadness for Chartier, who revealed afterwards that he raced on Sunday for his sick grandfather back in the United States. Our thoughts are very much with Collin and his family.
PRO Women – Lisa Norden’s bike masterclass
As with the men, the additional 5km of running to start the race did little to split things up – but that was about to change.
A multiple Swedish Time Trial champion, a flat course and strong winds provided a dream scenario for the London 2012 Olympic silver medallist Lisa Norden. 85km and and two hours and 10 minutes after mounting her bike, she would start the half-marathon run with a six-minute lead over Sara Perez Sala (ESP), Els Visser (NED) and Lucy Hall (GBR), and nine over Emma Bilham (SUI).
That should be game over for an athlete with Norden’s C.V., and it was. She even extended her lead on the run.
Challenge Salou 2021 Results
Sunday October 3, 2021
5km run / 85km bike / 21km run (swim cancelled)
- Collin Chartier (USA) – 3:28:52
- Jorik van Egdom (NED) – 3:31:21
- Robbie Deckard (USA) – 3:33:48
- Dominik Sowieja (POL) – 3:34:16
- Braden Currie (NZL) – 3:34:47
9. Grant Sheldon (GBR) – 3:38:40
12. Thomas Davis (GBR) – 3:40:26
13. Brett Halliwell (GBR) – 3:40:45
14. Josh Lewis (GBR) – 3:41:56
21. Ian Dempsey (GBR) – 3:55:39
DNF – Andrew Horsfall-Turner (GBR)
DNF – Sam Wade (GBR)
- Lisa Norden (SWE) – 3:51:09
- Els Visser (NED) – 3:59:01
- Lucy Hall (GBR) – 3:59:42
- Emma Bilham (SUI) – 4:00:22
- Alexandra Tondeur (BEL) – 4:03:59
8. Tara Grosvenor (GBR) – 4:14:31
DNF – Lucy Byram (GBR)