Great Britain’s Elite team claimed gold in the European Mixed Relay Triathlon Championships to cap off a successful weekend which also yielded two silvers and a bronze.
The Europe Triathlon Sprint and Relay Championships was held over three days in Kitzbühel, Austria, a packed schedule of racing which featured semi-finals (Friday), finals (Saturday) and the European Mixed Relay Triathlon Championship on Sunday.
All of the racing was live-streamed too via TriathlonLive.tv (including a marathon solo effort on commentary from Paul Groves – all achieved from his kitchen table near Dover!) Having been in similar positions myself over the years, there’s a lot that goes on behind the scenes that you, the viewers, don’t get to see.
Short-distance format (500m / 12km / 3.1km for the individual racing) saw plenty of action and a fast turnaround for a format which was initially scheduled for 2020, but delayed by… well, you know what.
Europe Triathlon Sprint and Relay Championships recap
It was Max Studer (SUI) and Laura Lindemann (GER) who took the the honours in the Elite individual races, with the top British finishers being Olivia Mathias (5th) and Sam Dickinson (7th) in the senior event. That fifth place earned Olivia a silver medal in the U23 category.
There was another British U23 medal for Connor Bentley, who took bronze, having finished 9th overall in the combined Senior/U23 final.
Perhaps the closest to gold for the Brits on Saturday was Daniel Dixon in the Junior event. I’ve interviewed Daniel several times before on the site, following his wins at Super League Triathlon events, and he sprinted into the lead in the final with about 400m to, but it was perhaps just a touch early.
Henry Graf remained calm and closed the gap, as the German team collected both victories in the Junior races, courtesy of Graf and Jule Behrens.
While the upcoming Olympics and the end of the qualification cycle meant that there would never be a full complement of every nation’s top athletes in Austria, you still take every opportunity offered. In the case of the British Mixed Relay team (Rainsley, Dickinson, Mathias and Benson), they were in contention right from the start.
On leg three, Olivia built a significant lead of 18 seconds to hand over the 2015 European Games champion, Gordon Benson, and while Jonas Breinlinger (GER) did manage to bridge that gap by the bike dismount line, Benson dominated the short final run for a clear victory for the British quartet.
Europe Triathlon Sprint and Relay Championship Results
500m / 12km / 3.1km – Individual Finals, Saturday 19th June 2021
1st – Max Studer (SUI) – 32:03
2nd – Antonio Serrat Seoane (ESP) – 32:09
3rd – Hayden Wilde (NZL) – 32:16
7th – Sam Dickinson (GBR) -32:24
9th – Connor Bentley (GBR) – 32:36
26th – Gordon Benson (GBR) – 33:33
1st – Laura Lindemann (GER) – 35:21
2nd – Valentina Riasova (RUS) – 35:26
3rd – Leonie Periault (FRA) – 35:27
4th – Nicola Spirig (SUI) – 35:37
5th – Olivia Mathias (GBR) – 35:43
7th – Sian Rainsley (GBR) – 35:47
9th – Sophie Alden (GBR) – 35:52
1st – Ricardo Batista (POR) – 32:29
2nd – Tim Hellwig (GER) – 32:30
3rd – Connor Bentley (GBR) – 32:36
22nd – Cameron Main (GBR) – 34:01
1st – Valentina Riasova (RUS) – 35:26
2nd – Olivia Mathias (GBR) – 35:43
3rd – Lisa Tertsch (GER) – 35:44
4th – Sophie Alden (GBR) – 35:52
33rd – Sophia Green (GBR) – 39:06
1st – Henry Graf (GER) – 33:16
2nd – Daniel Dixon (GBR) – 33:22
3rd – Alexandre Montez (POR) – 33:32
1st – Jule Behrens (GER) – 36:41
2nd – Tilda Mansson (SWE) – 36:47
3rd – Maria Casals Mojica (ESP) – 37:01
13th – Bethany Cook (GBR) – 37:39
30th – Daisy Davies (GBR) – 38:51
250m / 6km / 2.25km – Mixed Relays, Sunday 20th June 2021
1st – Great Britain – 1:09:18 (Sian Rainsley, Sam Dickinson, Olivia Mathias, Gordon Benson)
2nd – Germany – 1:09:36
3rd – Russia – 1:10:08
1st – Germany – 1:11:55
2nd – France – 1:12:32
3rd – Spain – 1:12:49
4th – Great Britain – 1:13:06 (Bethany Cook, Daniel Dixon, Daisy Davies, Matt Howard)