The cream of Australia’s ITU triathletes and paratriathletes will converge on Yokohama this Saturday for the resumption of the World Triathlon Series and start of the World Paratriathlon Series in Japan’s second largest city all with their sights set on returning to Japan for the 2020 Olympics.
The third stop of the series will be held over the Standard distance in and around Yamashita Park in Yokohama City.
The men’s field will feature Australia’s Commonwealth Games team members gold and silver medallist Jake Birtwhistle and Luke Willian; Rio Olympian Aaron Royle and Marcel Walkington.
The women’s race will see Australia’s Commonwealth Games mixed relay gold medallist Ashleigh Gentle and training partners Natalie Van Coevorden and Emma Jeffcoat back in action after spending the past week at Miyakojima City, Okinawa Prefecture, Team Australia’s training venue in preparation for Tokyo 2020 Olympic and Paralympic Games.
Gentle finished fourth in Yokohama last year, Van Coevorden 14th and Jeffcoat 17th.
Gold Coast based Western Australian Jaz Hedgeland makes her WTS debut after a brilliant start to 2019, bronze at New Plymouth World Cup and silver at Moreton Bay OTU Oceania Championship.
Kelly-Ann Perkins will make her first WTS appearance in 2019 after an 8th place at the Mooloolaba World Cup and wins at the Gold Coast OTU Sprint Oceania Cup and Moreton Bay OTU Oceania Championships.
The Paratriathletes will kick start the busy day with the opening round of the ITU World Paratriathlon Series attracting Paralympic and world champions.
For the third year running, the Australians will be among the best paratriathletes from around the world who will compete in the first event of the revamped calendar over a sprint distance race along the picturesque Yamashita Park.
Gold Coast Games silver medallist Nic Beveridge will line up in an all-star PTWC race. In the female category, Australia’s Commonwealth Games silver medallist and world champion Emily Tapp will line up in the PTWC class along with Commonwealth Games bronze medallist Lauren Parker.
Rio Paralympic gold medallist Katie Kelly (PTV1) will feature in her first international race of the year and looking to begin her journey in defending her title in Tokyo next year. In the men’s race Jonathan Goerlach goes in the highest ranked athlete in the field.
After a strong start to his domestic season with wins at the Newcastle OTU Paratriathlon Oceania Championship, silver at the Devonport ITU World Cup, and crowned national champion, Clint Pickin will be looking to test himself at an international level in the PTS4 category.
Paratriathlon: Saturday 12 May - 06:50 – Local | 07:50 AEST
Elite Women: Saturday 12 May - 10:16 – Local | 11:16 AEST
Elite Men: Saturday 12 May - 13:06 – Local | 14:06 AEST