This weekend saw all forms of racing around the world with HUUB athletes storming to victory on more than one occasion. The Beijing International Triathlon featured an impressive start-list with many athletes travelling over from the WTS Grand Final, and others choosing Weihai World Cup as their final race of the season. Back in the UK, it was more a battle for survival than racing as PRO’s and many age group athletes took to the streets of Weymouth for the Ironman 70.3 and battled cold and extremely wet conditions. Over in Innsbruck Dan Bigham, this time in a consultant role was with Canyon-SRAM for the World Team Time Trial Championships.
Some of ITU's biggest stars headed to the Chinese capital and it created some intense racing. Jonny Brownlee (GBR), Ben Kanute (USA) and defending champion Henri Schoeman (RSA) gained a 30-second gap in the water to the chasing group including Alistair Brownlee (GBR) and Kristian Blummenfelt (NOR). It was only Blummenfelt who was able to make it across to the leading trio, with Alistair claiming post-race, he wasn't feeling himself.
Onto the 10k run and the quartet were still together, first to crack was Kanute, followed by Schoeman. Jonny Brownlee went on to claim the victory by 9 seconds over Blummenfelt, with Schoeman 3rd and Alistair overhauling Kanute to finish in 4th; a fine 1-2-3-4 for HUUB! Ashleigh Gentle (AUS) won the women's race with Non Stanford in 2nd and Lucy Hall 3rd.
Just South-East of Beijing, yet still over 800km away Weihai hosted one of the last World Cups of the year. HUUB's Jorgen Gunderson (NOR) was up at the front of the swim and towards the end of bike broke clear from the main pack numbering around 20 athletes. Unfortunately with world-class runners like Alex Yee (GBR) hunting him down his lead didn't hold on. In the searing heat, it was HUUB athlete Gustav Iden (NOR) who made the crucial move and went on to claim his third World Cup victory with an emphatic run of 30.15 for the 10km. Antonio Serrat Seoane (ESP) finished in 2nd with Yee 3rd. In the women's race, Taylor Spivey (USA) claimed victory with Annamaria Mazzetti (ITA) 2nd and Miriam Casillas Garcia (ESP) in 3rd.
For many of the athletes racing it was more the element of surviving than racing. It was one of the only races back at home in the UK not cancelled due to the weather warnings and it was clear many suffered in the conditions with numerous DNF's. In the end, only 6 male and 6 female PRO's finished the race. The shortened 950m swim did little to separate the field, it was only the bike where the race started to separate things up. Will Clarke (GBR) established a sizeable advance before succumbing to a mechanical and one by one athletes dropped out.
HUUB's Elliot Smales kept himself well in contention but it was Alexandre Blain (FRA), an ex-pro cyclist who lead into T2. It didn't take Smales long to overtake the Frenchman and he never looked back once in the lead and went on to claim his third 70.3 victory of 2018. Sam Pictor (GBR) finished in 2nd with Sam Proctor (GBR) in 3rd. In the women's race India Lee (GBR), who wore a HUUB wetsuit claimed victory in her debut 70.3 distance race, with Nikki Bartlett (GBR) in 2nd and Fanella Langridge (GBR) in 3rd.
HUUB's aerodynamic consultant and athlete Dan Bigham this time wasn't creating headlines for his multiple national titles or World Cup track cycling victories, but for his consultant role for the Canyon - SRAM team at this years UCI World Championships.
With Dan's expert knowledge rapidly becoming gospel in the British TT community it wasn't long before the World Tour took notice. The team Canyon-SRAM made up of Hannah Barnes, Alice Barnes, Elena Cecchini, Lisa Klein, Alena Amialiusik and Trixi Worrack claimed the World title with a time of 1:01:46 for the 54.1km course in Innsbruck, beating Boels Dolmans by 21 seconds and 2017 winners Team Sunweb by 28 seconds.
Jack Burnell (GBR) won the gold medal of the penultimate 10km Marathon Swim World Series in 2018 by the narrowest of margins in Qiandao Lake, Chun’an China. Burnell touched home only 0.1 seconds ahead of Rob Frederik Muffels (GER) after an epic three-way battle for the top spot also with Gregorio Paltrinieri (ITA) who ended up with bronze. Burnell completed the course in one hour 56 minutes 34.8 seconds.