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Olympic triathlon gold medalist returns to racing after more than 500 days since last event

Olympic Champion Flora Duffy makes her 100th WTCS appearance in Yokohama, having spent the last 500 days on the sidelines through injury.

Staff Reporter
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Lining up this weekend at WTCS Yokohama, reigning Olympic Champion Flora Duffy will compete in her first event since November 2022, following a prolonged period on the sidelines injured.

The Bermudian, who is also a multiple time World Champion and Commonwealth Games gold medalist, last raced short course triathlon at the WTCS Grand Final over a year and a half ago, which she won ahead of Georgia Taylor-Brown.

In 2024, the national hero and triathlon icon will attempt to become only the second triathlete ever, and the first female, to successfully defend her Olympic title, alongside Britain’s Alistair Brownlee in 2012-2016.

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Where has she been?

Earlier this year, Duffy revealed the extent of her injury, which she first started to notice during the Commonwealth Games in Birmingham two years ago, where she won the individual gold medal.

Flora Duffy WTCS Bermuda 2022
Flora Duffy wins WTCS Bermuda in 2022 (Photo – World Triathlon).

It was confirmed later on that she had a partial patellar tendon tear, with further scans revealing “a very bad looking tendon in general, that was very thick with some cartilage damage and an oedema on my tendon and my fat pad”.

After a lengthy recovery process, that was filled with highs and lows, Duffy was finally able to get back on track towards the end of 2024, and since then has been building back up for a return to racing.

Does she need to qualify for Paris?

Fortunately, Duffy has already secured her spot in Paris, meaning that her result in Yokohama won’t impact her chances of racing at the Olympic Games this summer.

Flora Duffy Commonwealth Games flag photo credit Ben Lumley World Triathlon
Flora Duffy Commonwealth Games flag [Photo credit: Ben Lumley / World Triathlon]

However, the Boulder based pro did reveal that she was targeting both WTCS Yokohama and WTCS Cagliari not only to sharpen her racing skills, but also to improve her pontoon position for race day in the French capital.

Making her 100th World Triathlon start in Japan, the 36-year-old extends what has already been a fantastic career, with 44 World Triathlon podiums and 27 wins to her name, as she guns for gold once again this summer.

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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