SLT Mallorca Day Two: Luis holds off Brownlee in a thriller

Vincent Luis - SLT Mallorca Sprint Enduro Day Two 2018

Sprint Enduro provides fantastic finale to Super League Triathlon Mallorca

Jonathan Brownlee close as Vincent Luis wins third SLT title

The women’s race that preceded it was fantastic – and the men clearly didn’t want to be left in the shade for Sunday’s Sprint Enduro race at Super League Triathlon Mallorca. The most exciting single day of SLT racing yet? Almost certainly. Brilliant, close and exciting racing where the stars aligned, the athletes delivered and the innovations worked. They will – and should – be celebrating in the Super League Triathlon organisation team tonight.

(CLICK HERE FOR THE WOMEN’S DAY TWO REPORT)

The ten men that qualified this morning from the two heats would qualify for Stage Two of the Sprint Enduro – a S/B/R/S/B/R enduro. We’d seen earlier that the heat winners, Taylor Spivey and Kirsten Kasper, were able to utilise the ‘short chute’ joker they had earned to crucial effect. Would the men’s heat winners, Jonathan Brownlee and Vincent Luis, benefit in the same way? Yes – and what a finish it was.

A “terrible” season so far, Jonny had his best performance of the three 2018 SLT races so far yesterday, with third place in the Triple Mix. Strong again today, with just over one lap on the final run leg to go, it was the three podium finishers from yesterday locked together – but Henri Schoeman was the only one without the joker to play. It looked as though this one was going to be a France vs. Great Britain battle.

On the shoulder of Luis, Brownlee decided to go for a long effort and make Vincent chase. He played the short-cut joker and went hard. Would he be able to pull clear and build enough of a lead over Luis, renowned for his fast finishing. We didn’t know – and that made it great viewing.

Looking much more like the ‘old’ Jonathan Brownlee he was giving it everything but the pink suit of series leader was holding strong. How would the positions work themselves out when Luis made his short chute turn? Close, very close – but the Vincent was just in front… with just a few hundred metres remaining…

A fine and aggressive effort from the British two-time Olympic medallist, but while Katie Zaferes was finally toppled from a Super League overall podium, Vincent Luis made it three from three (and another $20,000), making him the red hot favourite to take the $100,000 top prize at the Grand Final in Singapore in February 2019.

Super League Triathlon Mallorca – Sunday 4th November 2018
Day Two – Sprint Enduro (Stage Two)
300m / 4km / 2km / 300m / 4km / 2km (S/B/R/S/B/R)

1st – Vincent Luis (FRA) – 36:02
2nd – Jonathan Brownlee (GBR) – 36:07
3rd – Henri Schoeman (RSA) – 36:20
4th – Marten Van Riel (BEL) – 36:28
5th – Richard Murray (RSA) – 36:36
6th – Leo Bergere (FRA) – 36:50
7th – Tommy Zaferes (USA) – 37:56
DQ – Hayden Wilde (NZL)
DNF – Ben Kanute (USA)
DNF – Igor Polyanskiy (RUS)

Super League Mallorca Overall

1st – Vincent Luis (FRA) – $20,000
2nd – Henri Schoeman (RSA) – $15,000
3rd – Jonathan Brownlee (GBR) – $10,000

Overall Super League Triathlon Standings after Jersey, Malta, Mallorca

1st – Vincent Luis (FRA) – 75 points
2nd – Henri Schoeman (RSA) – 63 points
3rd – Richard Murray (RSA) – 48 points
4th – Jonathan Brownlee (GBR) – 46 points
5th – Hayden Wilde (NZL) – 34 points