Roberto Sanchez Mantecon runs to U23 World Championship victory

Chief Correspondent

Day one of the the ITU World Triathlon Grand Final Lausanne ended with the fourth event of the session, the ITU U23 World Championship for Elite Men.

After wins already today for Italy, Portugal and France, the addition of Spain to the Gold medal listing continued the European dominance of the Junior and U23 ranks.

The 1.5km swim was WTS regular and defending U23 champion, Tayler Reid (NZL) lead the way, but a long line of athletes saw another 25 bodies follow him in less than 20 seconds. The three Brits – Ben Dijkstra, Herry Leleu, James Teagle – were very closely bunched, around 45 seconds back.

it was a similar situation just under an hour later, as the bike section would leave 25 athletes starting the run within a handful of seconds. The Kiwi duo of Tayler Reid and Kyle Smith lead the way onto the four lap, 10km closing discipline. Among those who had managed to bridge up to that lead group after slow(er) swims were Roberto Sanchez Mantecon (ESP) and Ran Sagiv (ISR) with the two best bike splits. Those efforts would now be repaid.

As they were at T1, the trio of Brits were closely packed – but now 1:45 back, even the speedy running of Ben Dijkstra was going to struggle to turn that into a podium result against the quality already more than half a kilometre up the road.

Early in the run, Sanchez Montecon made a big move and quickly built a significant lead. He looked great, the only question really was whether he had gone too fast, too soon? He hadn’t.

While Dijkstra did indeed produce the fastest run spilt (31:56), which leap-frogged him up to eighth place at the finish, the Spanish athlete looked in control at the front and could enjoy the last 500m safe in the knowledge that the victory was his. Silver went to the 2018 Junior World Champion Csongor Lehmann (HUN), with Ran Sagiv taking the Bronze for Israel.

ITU World U23 Triathlon Championships, Lausanne – Friday 30th August 2019
1.5Km / 40km / 10km


1st – Roberto Sanchez Mantecon (ESP) – 1:50:19
2nd – Csongor Lehmann (HUN) – 1:50:36
3rd – Ran Sagiv (ISR) – 1:50:50
4th – Vasco Vilaco (POR) –  1:51:07
5th – Brandon Copeland (AUS) – 1:51:11

8th – Ben Dijkstra (GBR) – 1:51:44
17th – Harry Leleu (GBR) – 1:53:31
28th – James Teagle (GBR) – 1:55:44

John Levison
Written by
John Levison
TRI247's Chief Correspondent, John has been involved in triathlon for well over 30 years, 15 of those writing on these pages, whilst he can also be found commentating for events across the UK.
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