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World Triathlon Cup Napier Results: McClusky edges out home favourite Hayden Wilde for win

The short course season got underway in New Zealand with a brilliant race at the World Triathlon Cup in Napier.

Staff Reporter
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Callum McClusky made it a golden day for Australia in Napier, as the 26-year-old held on for a memorable win at the first World Triathlon Cup of the season.

Having played his cards right across the board just two hours after compatriot Sophie Linn took the win in the women’s race by doing the same, McClusky was rewarded with a first World Cup victory.

Behind, following a valiant effort to claw his way back to the front following a poor swim, home favourite Hayden Wilde left it all on the line to come through in second as Spaniard Alberto Gonzalez Garcia finished in third.

Fast and furious start to the season

Not messing about, the swim was strung out from the get go in the men’s race, with Italian Alessio Crociani putting the hammer down over the 750m course before coming flying up the beach into T1 in Napier.

Followed closely by home talent Dylan McCullough, the lead pack had a +0:40 lead over pre-race favourite Wilde, as ‘The Falcon’ left himself with a lot of work to do over the bike and the run.

Hayden Wilde bike leg Abu Dhabi WTCS 2023 photo credit Wagner Araujo World Triathlon
[Photo credit: Wagner Araujo / World Triathlon]

However, in typical Hayden Wilde fashion, the Olympic bronze medalist set out on a relentless pursuit from T1, with the Kiwi demonstrating his ridiculous bike-run combo to somehow bring himself within touching distance of the front by the closing stages.

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McClusky keeps his cool for first World Cup win

However, despite his best efforts, Wilde came up just short in his pursuit of the top spot in Napier, with McClusky too strong as the Australian held on for a special first World Triathlon Cup win.

Callum McClusky picked up a maiden World Triathlon Cup win in Napier.
[Photo Credit – World Triathlon]

For the World #83, the win will go a long way in his bid for selection to Australia’s team alongside Matt Hauser in Paris, especially if he can carry this momentum into another solid hit out over the sprint distance at WTCS Abu Dhabi in two weeks time.

For Wilde, to miss out on the win will be disappointing, but his bike-run performance will offer some consolation. Officially running 13:52 off the bike for 5km (if the course is accurate) is simply mind blowing, regardless of where you finish in the race.

In third, Gonzalez Garcia joins a long list of the current crop of Spanish talents who are looking more and more like the dominant triathlon nation they once were. Sam Dickinson, who recently joined the Team BMC squad, was the top Brit in seventh.

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World Triathlon Cup Napier results

Saturday February 24 2024 – 750m / 20km / 5km

Elite Men

  • 1. Callum McClusky (AUS) – 49:41
  • 2. Hayden Wilde (NZL) – 49:47
  • 3. Alberto Gonzalez Garcia (ESP) – 49:49
  • 4. Shachar Sagiv (ISR) – 49:50
  • 5. Dylan McCullough (NZL) – 49:52
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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