Olympic qualfication up for grabs at 2016 Jewel World Triathlon Series

By International Triathlon Union (ITU)

The ITU World Triathlon Series returns to Gold Coast as the second stop on the 2016 WTS calendar with a jam packed list of all-stars ready to shine in the coastal city. As the Olympics draw near, every race is important for securing Olympic qualification points, and this weekend the race to Rio is more heated than ever with qualification on the line for many major names. 

Click here for the women's preview
Click here for the men's preview

Gold Coast served as the first Grand Final World Championship race for the ITU World Triathlon Series when the WTS first began back in 2009. That meant the race was the first World Championships which saw the world titles won over the course of the season in lieu of a one-day hit out race. With 70km of coastline, the "surfer's paradise" is also the perfect location for a triathlon. This weekend will see not only the elites compete, but also offers three different triathlons for athletes of all ages and abilities to get involved in the sport.

Elite Women

Saturday 9 April - 09:36am UTC/GMT +10 Click here for the time in your area
Elite Men
Saturday 9 April - 12:36pm UTC/GMT+10 Click here for the time in your area 


Click here for the women's start list
Click here for the men's start list

$150,000 USD (equal for men & women)  
Follow all the events live with timing and text updates, at and on twitter at @triathlonlive. Below is a media login to watch the races for media use only.  
Swim (1.5km) - Athletes will start at the Broadwater Parklands and will swim two anti-clockwise laps.
Bike (40km) - The bike is an eight-lap technical bike course that meanders along the Gold Coast Highway with several 90- and 180-degree turns.
Run (10km) - The run consists of a four-lap, 10km course that circles around the Aquatic Centre, Anzac Park and Broadwater Parklands.

For the first time since WTS London last year, both of the Brownlee brothers are set to compete together in the same race. Alistair Brownlee and Jonathan Brownlee (GBR) both endured injuries last year that saw them miss portions of the season. But make no mistake about it, when the Brownlee brothers are on the start list, they are most likely in top form. Older brother Alistair had a string of WTS victories last year when he won in Cape Town and London, while Jonathan earned back-to-back WTS wins in Auckland and Gold Coast.

The home crowd will have a lot to cheer on as the Aussie men and women vie for one Olympic spot this weekend. The Australian women has the potential to add its first woman to its Olympic roster this weekend if an athlete finishes in the top ten. Ashleigh Gentle, Emma Moffatt, Emma Jackson, Charlotte McShane, Erin Densham and Gillian Backhouseand Felicity Sheedy-Ryan are among the talented women vying to be that person.

Like the women, the first Australian man to cross the finish line inside the top time will get an automatic berth to Rio. However, if Royle is the first man to finish the race, all bets are off and the final two positions will be determined on a discretionary basis. Among the hopefuls are Ryan Bailie, Ryan Fisher, Courtney Atkinson and Jacob Birtwhistle. Bailie finished eighth in Abu Dhabi, while Atkinson has the experience of two Olympic Games behind him. With varying strengths among them all, it will be a nail-biting finish sure to keep the crowd on its feet. 

Just like the Australians, the British women are also fighting for an Olympic spot this weekend. The golden number one will be worn by Great Britain’s Jodie Stimpson, who has begun her 2016 in perfect fashion. The other British star looking to snatch the final Olympic ticket for Great Britain is Helen Jenkins. The two-time Olympian earned bronze in Abu Dhabi, which proves it is going to be a tough and tight battle in determining who will make it to Rio this summer. The first one to cross the finish line in Gold Coast stands the best chance to punch a ticket to Rio.

After opening up her 2016 season with a World Cup victory in New Plymouth just this last weekend, the much anticipated return of reigning World Champion Gwen Jorgensen (USA) to the World Triathlon Series will come to fruition in Gold Coast. Jorgensen hasn’t lost a race since 2014, and with Gold Coast amongst her wins last year, she joins the start list as not only the reigning World Champion, but the returning Gold Coast champ. Proving stronger and stronger in each discipline with every race, expect the undefeated triathlete to be with the leading ladies. While Sarah True and Katie Zaferes got caught up in a crash in Abu Dhabi, they were both regular features to the podium last year. It was in Gold Coast, after all, that these women, along with Jorgensen, scored its first of two USA podium sweeps last year. 

Past Gold Coast Winners 
Women                            Men  

ITU World Triathlon Series
2015: Gwen Jorgensen (USA)  Jonny Brownlee (GBR) 
2009: Emma Moffatt (AUS)       Alistair Brownlee (GBR)
2009 Under23 ITU World Championships
Hollie Avil (GBR)               Franz Loeschke (GER)
2009 Junior ITU World Championships
Emmie Charayron (FRA)    Mario Mola (ESP)
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