After 26 months in a desert bereft of WTCS gold, two-time World Triathlon World Champion Vincent Luis of France combined a race-best swim, a third-best bike split and a top 10 run to finish in 1:49:37 with 8- and 17-seconds margins over Spaniards Antonio Serrat Seoane and third place finisher Roberto Sanchez Mantecon.
After two years of off form results due to illness and injury, Luis took his first WTCS podium in a year and first gold in 2 years and 2 months.
While he stubbornly resisted surrendering to the onrushing, hot running Spaniards (who were running 39 seconds faster), Luis offered proof that he was back on track for his home country 2024 Paris Olympics.
His emotion was obvious when talking to World Triathlon media after the race – “I am almost crying and yet I am now stronger than before,” he said. “On that last lap, I remembered all the days I could not run. And now I realize the only thing that matters is between the ears.” Luis added, “I am really happy for myself and give thanks for all the people who were helping me on a daily basis. On that last lap, I made sure to make sure I had saved one last match to burn for the finish.”
Chasing Luis, the Spanish duo Antonio Serrat Seoane and Roberto Sanchez Mantecon showed run strength, both scooping their first WTCS podiums. The pair had considerable ground to make up out of T2, to pass Jelle Geens of Belgium to take silver and gold.
In the World Triathlon title chase, Geens took 4th and Alex Yee managed 5th in a late surge leaving him 118 points shy of series leader Hayden Wilde, who did not compete at Bermuda. The series will wind up in Abu Dhabi at the end of this month.
WTCS Bermuda – Men's Results
1. Vincent Luis FRA S 19:01 T1 00:45 B 58:06 T2 00:25 R 31:22 TOT 1:49:37
2. Antonio Serrat Seoane ESP S 19:43 T1 00:39 B 58:19 T2 00:23 R 30:43 TOT 1:49:45
3. Roberto Sanchez Mantecon ESP S 19:51 T1 00:42 B 58:07 T2 00:25 R 30:52 TOT 1:49:54
4. Jelle Geens BEL S 19:49 T1 00:41 B 58:05 T2 00:21 R 31:06 TOT 1:50:00
5. Alex Yee GBR S 19:40 T1 00:38 B 58:21 T2 00:26 R 31:01 TOT 1:50:04
6. Kristian Blummenfelt NOR S 19:37 T1 00:43 B 58:14 T2 00:24 R 31:10 TOT 1:50:07
7. Lasse Luhrs GER S 19:44 T1 00:40 B 58:13 T2 00:23 R 31:14 TOT 1:50:13
8. Bence Bicsak HUN S 19:45 T1 00:44 B 58:13 T2 00:25 R 31:09 TOT 1:50:15
9. Gustav Iden NOR S 19:53 T1 00:41 B 58:02 T2 00:26 R 31:15 TOT 1:50:15
10. Tom Richard FRA S 19:21 T1 00:45 B 58:32 T2 00:24 R 31:17 TOT 1:50:17
16. Matthew McElroy USA S 19:51 T1 00:39 B 58:11 T2 00:23 R 32:07 1:51:10
37. Chase McQueen USA S 19:32 T1 00:43 B 58:20 T2 00:24 R 36:37 TOT 1:55:34
DNF Kevin McDowell USA
DNF Seth Rider USA
DNF Brent Demarest USA
Women's Race Recap
After a race-best 20:15 swim, a second-fastest 1:05:26 bike split and a race-fastest 34:39 run, Flora Duffy finished her home town Bermuda WTCS race in 2:01:26 with a 1:38 margin over Taylor Knibb of the U.S. and 1:51 over Beth Potter of Britain.
Going into today’s race, Duffy knew that a win at Bermuda (Taylor-Brown did not race in Bermuda) and a win at Abu Dhabi would make Duffy’s dream come true of another world title.
On the swim, Duffy tied for best swim split (20:15) with Bianca Seregni of Italy, 22 seconds better than Maya Kingma of Netherlands, whose 20:37 swim split left her in 10th place. Taylor Knibb’s 20:46 swim – 17th place - left her 31 seconds behind Duffy.
Early on the bike, Kingma pulled clear to bridge up to Duffy, a welcome sight for the Bermudian not wanting another 40km solo ride to keep Knibb at arm’s length. The rain came down, and the pair sliced through the field while Knibb took longer to catch up.
Unfortunately for Knibb, Duffy and Kingma teamed up so well, Duffy and Kingma extended their lead and when Duffy rocketed away from T2 with an unassailable lead. Nursing a twisted ankle, Kingma had no prayer of keeping up as first Knibb, then Beth Potter roared past.
and Kingma fell to 6th place at the finish.
And so, it came down to the run. Duffy’s race-best 34:39 10k trumped her rivals. Knibb’s women’s 8th-best 35:28 run left her in second place, 1:38 behind Duffy. And Beth Potter’s women’s second-best 34:41 run split left her in third place, 1:51 behind Duffy and 13 seconds behind Beth Potter
“Today was incredible,” Duffy told World Triathlon media. “I couldn’t have asked for a better race. The crowd was amazing, but racing at home as Olympic Champion I knew I needed a big performance and it was one of those days where everything lined up. I was just so thankful for Maya on the bike who was so strong, and the crowd pulled me through on that 10km run. It was really difficult to keep my composure and then that last lap I was just able to soak it in and enjoy it.”
In her second straight – after her Ironman 70.3 triumph - brilliant race, Knibb held firm to the silver position. “There were good parts and parts that I can work on,” Knibb told World Triathlon media. “Congrats to Flora, she crushed here on her course, and it was so fun to be here. She definitely taught us a lesson on how to dominate a race. There is still a lot of work to do on our side but hopefully the gap was closer (between her and me) than the last time we both raced here. And hats off to Beth Potter, she had a great race, I was so scared of her the whole time, especially on the last part of the run. I knew she was coming in hot… so I tried to put as much time as I could.”
Potter felt quite happy with her day. “I am pretty pleased today,” she told World Triathlon media. “It is such a pleasure to be on the podium with two of the best riders of the planet. I wish I had gone with (Knibb) but I didn’t believe in myself enough, maybe I should be a bit more gutsy, but I am still happy.”
WTCS Bermuda – Women
November 6, 2022
S 1.5k / B 40k / R 10k
1 Flora Duffy BER S 20:15 T1 00:42 B 1:05:26 T2 00:26 R 34:39 TOT 2:01:26
2 Taylor Knibb USA S 20:46 T1 00:47 B 1:05:321 T2 00:32 R 35:28 TOT 2:03:04
3 Beth Potter GBR S 20:47 T1 00:42 B 1:06:45 T2 00:24 R 34:41 TOT 2:03:17
4 Laura Lindemann GER S 20:35 T1 00:44 B 1:06:56 T2 00:27 R 35:20 TOT 2:04:00
5 Taylor Spivey USA S 20:42 T1 00:44 B 1:06:47 T2 00:26 R 35:27 TOT 2:04:05
6 Maya Kingma NED S 20:37 T1 00:47 B 1:04:59 T2 00:29 R 37:37 TOT 2:04:26
7 Miriam Casillas Garcia ESP S 2L:26 T1 00:43 B 1:06:53 T2 00:27 R 35:09 TOT 2:04:35
8. Verena Steinhauser ITA S 21:27 T1 00:45 B 1:06:50 T2 00:26 R 35:14 TOT 2:04:38
9. Luisa Baptista BRA S 21:27 T1 00:44 B 1:06:54 T2 00:24 R 35:27 TOT 2:04:53
10. Bianca Seregni ITA S 20:15 T1 00:45 B 1:07:18 T2 00:29 R 36:17 TOT 2:05:01
14. Erika Ackerlund USA S 21:24 T1 00:44 B 1:06:57 T2 00:28 R 36:20 TOT 2:05:50
25. Summer Rappaport USA S 20:18 T1 00:43 B 1:10:12 T2 00:28 R 37:12 TOT 2:08:51