Danish star Magnus Ditlev was finally confirmed as the men’s winner of the inaugural Challenge Budva-Montenegro 48 hours after being disqualified.
Ditlev registered a hugely impressive success on Sunday, destroying the opposition to come home almost seven minutes in front of Patrick Lange.
Budva DSQ for Ditlev
Hours after he broke the tape though, Challenge Family announced that Ditlev had been disqualified for “unintentional course cutting”.
In a classy move the athletes finishing behind Ditlev even decided to share their prize money in acknowledgement of the Dane’s terrific performance.
That wasn’t the end of the drama though, as 48 hours later on Tuesday, we got an about-turn in the form of another update from Challenge Family. It said Ditlev’s disqualification had been changed to a five-minute time penalty, in acknowledgement of the part race organisation played in “misdirecting” Magnus.
The statement read: “Following Magnus Ditlev’s disqualification at CHALLENGEBUDVA-MONTENEGRO for unintentional course cutting and a subsequent protest from Ditlev, CHALLENGEFAMILY and CHALLENGEBUDVA-MONTENEGRO have further investigated the incident.
“The decision to disqualify Ditlev was based on information available at the time as per the World Triathlon rules where course-cutting results in disqualification. However, based on subsequent investigation, his disqualification has been returned to a five-minute time penalty as provided initially.
“The action was reduced in acknowledgement of the part the race organisation played in misdirecting Ditlev, for which CHALLENGEFAMILY and CHALLENGEBUDVA-MONTENEGRO has apologised, with a commitment to put more robust procedures in place to ensure this is not repeated.
“Ditlev retains his place as the inaugural CHALLENGEBUDVA-MONTENEGRO champion with a time of 3:46:29 with Patrick Lange in second (3:48:21) and Ruedi Wild in third (3:50:43).”
The result will be welcome news for Ditlev, not just because of the prize money on offer last Sunday. Every position counts right now as athletes bid to scoop some of that huge $2million prize pool for the PTO’s ‘Race For The Rankings’ at the end of 2021.