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Olympic Games triathlon: Defending champion Kristian Blummenfelt taking training ‘risks’ to prepare for ‘Big Dance’ at Paris 2024

Olympic champion Kristian Blummenfelt is looking to put his two recent WTCS performances behind him in the build-up to the Paris Games next month.

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Kristian Blummenfelt is putting everything on the line in training as he prepares to defend his Olympic Games triathlon title at Paris 2024 next month.

The Tokyo 2021 gold medalist, who so far this season has finished 10th and 31st at WTCS Yokohama and WTCS Cagliari respectively, has less than six weeks to change his fortunes after returning to short-course racing.

Training up at altitude in Font Romeu, the Norwegian star shared in his most recent YouTube video that he was willing to take ‘risks’ in his run training to become competitive once again.

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Taking the rough with the smooth

Despite a difficult day out in Cagliari, where his race was hampered by a puncture, Blummenfelt took some positives from his race.

Kristian Blummenfelt open water swim trainng
Photo Credit: Joerg Mitter/ Red Bull Content Pool

“I was pleased with my position out of the water and my distance to the first guys. It is always a bit more difficult when it’s a beach start and run in, I’m terrible running on the beach, but luckily there’s no beach in Paris and I’m happy with my place out of the swim.

“The power on the bike was pretty good, I was careful on the turns when it started raining, and I knew before the race I would have some high pressure in my rear wheel, because I got some sealant into the valve and was slipping in the technical sections, which really took my confidence away.

“After 15-16km I got a flat tyre, but luckily just ahead of me I had a neutral wheel station and managed to get a new neutral wheel, but then I lost contact with the first and second back and was riding mostly by myself between the second and third group.” 

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Finding silver linings

Knowing better than anyone where his run fitness needs to be, Blummenfelt was dismayed to split more than a minute slower than gold medal contenders Alex Yee and Hayden Wilde, but said that it was not surprising given his position in T2.

“It’s hard to run a 10km as fast as you can when you know you are just running to get inside the Top 30 or so. I think I ran 30:33, well over a minute slower than the pace where I should’ve been with Alex [Yee] and Hayden [Wilde] which is obviously the goal.

“On one hand, I was pleased with how the run felt, it was better than Yokohama, but it’s tricky to run hard by yourself for not much and I finished 31st in the end.” 

“I’m disappointed with the result, but I am pleased with the overall fitness and with how the body has responded since Yokohama, so now it is on to the big one, the big dance in Paris.” 

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Taking risks on the run

With every training sessions carrying great importance in the final build to Paris, the defending champion said that focusing on his run speed will be key over the next six weeks.

Kristian Blummenfelt Olympic Games Triathlon Tokyo 2021
Norway’s Kristian Blummenfelt wins gold in the Olympic Games triathlon in Tokyo in 2021 (Photo – World Triathlon).

“I am heading to Font Romeu for a month where hopefully I will be able to fine tune the run legs a little bit more.

“I will take some risk in the amount of kilometres I am going to run and try to put in as many long track sessions as possible and see if ramping up the volume on the run will increase the fitness.” 

Tomos Land
Written by
Tomos Land
Tomos Land is a triathlon & running journalist whose expertise lies in the professional world of short course & long distance triathlon, though he also boasts an extensive knowledge of ultra-running.
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