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Olympic Champions Brownlee, Duffy Slated to Race in PTO Singapore T100

Two-time triathlon Olympic champion Alistair Brownlee could make his Singapore debut at the April 12-14 PTO Asian Open alongside Tokyo Olympics women’s triathlon gold medallist Flora Duffy after the Professional Triathletes Organisation (PTO) unveiled their stellar athlete line-up and full calendar for the season in London on Tuesday (Jan 30).

At the launch at London’s City Hall, the PTO also announced a significant relaunch of its PTO Tour, now known as the T100 Triathlon World Tour, and 40 of the world’s best triathletes will be part of an expanded 2024 calendar that will feature eight races. The rebranded series will visit three continents, starting in Miami on March 9 before finishing with a Grand Final at a soon-to-be announced location at the end of November, where the women’s and men’s World Champion will be crowned. The full T100 Triathlon World Tour calendar for 2024 is as follows:

  1. March 9 – Miami T100
  2. April 12-14 – Singapore T100
  3. June – California T100 (date to be confirmed)
  4. July 27-28 – London T100
  5. Sept 28-29 – Ibiza T100
  6. Oct 19-20 – Lake Las Vegas T100
  7. Nov 16-17 – Dubai T100
  8. Nov 29-30 – Grand Final (location to be confirmed)

The evolution of the PTO Tour to the T100 Triathlon World Tour follows the PTO’s partnership agreement with World Triathlon in August 2023, which designated it the official World Championship tour of long distance triathlon.

The contracted athletes are required to compete in a minimum of five races as well as the Grand Final. 32 athletes qualified as a result of their PTO World Ranking at two points during 2023, with eight additional spots granted to women and men whose past results and future potential will bring excitement to the series.

The women’s line-up includes all the top PTO World Ranked athletes: current #1 Anne Haug (GER),  #2 Ashleigh Gentle (AUS), #3 Taylor Knibb (USA), #4 Lucy Charles-Barclay (GBR), #5 Laura Philipp (GER), #6 Kat Matthews (GBR), #7 Paula Findlay (CAN), #8 Daniela Ryf (SUI), #9 Imogen Simmonds (SUI), #10 Emma Pallant-Browne (GBR), #11 Chelsea Sodaro (USA), #12 Marjolaine Pierré (FRA), #13 Skye Moench (USA), #14 Tamara Jewett (CAN), #15 India Lee (GBR), #17 Amelia Watkinson (NZL) #22 Holly Lawrence (GBR), #25 Lucy Byram (GBR), Taylor Spivey (USA) and Flora Duffy (BER) [1].

The men’s line-up also features the very best athletes: current #2 Magnus Ditlev (DEN), #3 Jason West (USA), #5 Pieter Heemeryck (BEL), #6 Mathis Margirier (FRA), #7 Rudy Von Berg (USA), #8 Leon Chevalier (FRA), #9 Sam Long (USA), #11 Daniel Baekkegard (DEN), #12 Bradley Weiss (RSA), #13 Sam Laidlow (FRA), #14 Frederic Funk (GER), #15 Clement Mignon (FRA), #16 Aaron Royle (AUS), #17 David McNamee (GBR), #23 Ben Kanute (USA), #26 Rico Bogen (GER), #31 Alistair Brownlee (GBR), #174 Max Neumann (AUS), #205 Marten Van Riel (BEL) and #267 Javier Gomez (ESP)[2].

Brownlee, who emerged triumphant at London 2012 and Rio 2016, could race in Singapore for the first time when the series reaches Marina Bay in April. He was forced to sit out most of the 2023 PTO Tour season after injuring his ankle.

Brownlee, 35, said: “I’m really excited at the prospect of racing the Singapore T100. It will be my first time in Singapore and I have heard many good things about the city. From what I saw from last year, it will be a tough race with the heat and humidity but a great environment to race in that has so many beautiful sights along the route, while allowing you to hear spectators cheering right next to you. My aim for the first half of the season is to be fit and healthy, and to train consistently. I then aim to build on this during the second part of the season.”

Speaking at the launch event in London, Brownlee also voiced his support for the PTO’s rebrand. He added: “I want to see more people watching top-level long-distance triathlon and being inspired by seeing the top athletes racing. It’s crucial that the PTO succeeds and I’m convinced that the T100 Triathlon World Tour’s success will be triathlon’s success. It’s tough to create something new but ultimately, it will benefit every triathlete. So having the PTO work closely with World Triathlon to put on these great races in great locations that allow athletes to flourish and race to the best of their ability, while broadcasting it around the world in the right manner, has got to be the way to go to bring in new fans and people who want to engage in the sport in a new way.”

Women’s defending champion Ashleigh Gentle could also reignite her battle with Anne Haug in Singapore and the Australian will be hoping to retain her title. She said: “Singapore was my favourite race in 2023 and I’m looking forward to racing there again. The crowds were absolutely incredible, it was super well-supported and really entertaining to run through Marina Bay with that many people. As a course, I did enjoy Singapore a lot as well. The bike ride was really fun. It was pretty remarkable that we were able to ride on these roads that would otherwise be impossible to ride on. It’s super unique and quite a privilege. The multi-lap courses of each leg also create excitement and it means we can use the locations to their fullest as spectators get to see us multiple times. I would love to be able to retain at least one PTO title. It’ll be harder than ever but that’s always a goal. I’ve been quite successful on the PTO Tour so I’d love to be able to keep standing on those podiums and be competitive at the top end of the sport. I also want to keep enjoying myself and loving training and racing. I just try to enjoy the process, and I’m always grateful that I get to go to work every day and my work is triathlon. I know that it’s a very privileged thing, so I want to make the most of it.”

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Speaking on today’s announcement, PTO Executive Chairman Chris Kermode, said: “We’ve been clear that we wanted to create a tour that represents the pinnacle of the sport and have talked about the importance of a season-long schedule of high-quality racing that sees the world’s best endurance athletes going head-to-head on a consistent basis in different, iconic locations.  So we are hugely excited to be able to announce the 2024 calendar, that it will now be known as the T100 Triathlon World Tour and a world-class group of athletes. This is a significant step forward for the PTO and its ambition to elevate professional triathlon on a global sporting stage and is the culmination of what we’ve been working hard to achieve over the last 12 months. But, as I’ve said to the athletes and the PTO team over the last few weeks, in triathlon terms, the PTO is only just emerging from the water and there is still an awfully long way to go to the finish line. But to have the calibre of these athletes announced today sign up and commit to the new T100 Triathlon World Tour is a huge endorsement of what we’re building.”

World Triathlon President Marisol Casado said: “When we announced our partnership with PTO last summer, the goal that we had in mind was exactly this: to be able to deliver a brand new series of events that have their own ecosystem and that will elevate our sport to new heights. By uniting our strengths, passion and dedication, we aim to bring positive change and innovation to the triathlon community. Together, we aspire to forge a more inclusive, fair, competitive and sustainable landscape for athletes, fans and stakeholders. The T100 Triathlon World Tour exemplifies the tremendous potential that arises when organisations align their visions, fostering a thriving environment for the sport we all hold dear. As we embark on this journey hand in hand, we are steadfast in our belief that together, we can guide triathlon towards a brighter, more exhilarating future.”

On the rebranding of the PTO Tour to T100 Triathlon World Tour, PTO CEO Sam Renouf explained: “This was the right moment for us to introduce a more consumer facing brand. As we’ve developed the races and the broadcast product over the past three years, we’ve continued to listen to feedback from all parties, including our broadcast partners, the media, fans and, of course, our athletes who co-own the organisation. It was clear that we needed to be more explicit about this being a triathlon world tour as well as hero our exciting new 100km distance, which continues to mark us out and deliver compelling racing. With races being known as the Singapore T100 or Ibiza T100, we believe it will help establish T100 as both a powerful brand as well as a unique format – which will only help us on our mission to take the sport more mainstream. This will create more opportunities to attract new host cities, commercial sponsors and engage amateurs and Age Groupers whom we will be hosting at each of our stops this year. The look and feel of the new brand tell a very vibrant, relevant and visual story, thanks to the design having been inspired by the heart rate of an athlete during a triathlon.”

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Alongside the introduction of the new T100 brand and the athletes, the PTO confirmed the following:

  • 20 female and male athletes are contracted across the season (40 in total)
  •  Contracted athletes will race a minimum of5 races plus the Grand Final. Although racing obligations for athletes who’ve qualified and will compete in the Olympics have been reduced
  • A discretionary number of Wildcards at each event based on remaining spots
  • Athletes to score 35 points for first place to 1 point for 20th place at each race
  • The Grand Final has increased points to up the ante (55 points down to 4 points)
  • A US$250,000 prize fund at each T100, totalling $2,000,000 across the eight races (1st place – $25,000k; 2nd – $16,000; 3rd – $12,000 at each race)
  • The series winners following the Grand Final will be crownedT100 Triathlon World Champion and will win $210,000 from an additional total prize pool of $2,000,000
  •    Between the athlete contracts,T100 race prize fund and T100 Triathlon World Tour pool, the series provides more than $7,000,000 in athlete compensation, and is distributed in a way that not only rewards the winners, but also recognises the significant achievement of racing at this level

Full details are available on the T100 Triathlon World Tour website.

Renouf added: “The PTO’s events have improved each time, but we need more of them to take the sport mainstream. It has lacked a season-long narrative with a World Champion at the end. Media, fans and our athletes themselves have told us that. If we want to be more like the ATP or Formula One, where it’s Max Verstappen versus Lewis Hamilton every time they line up, there’s a need for a contracted relationship with the athletes so we know if we tune in, then we are seeing the ‘best of the best’ every time. This is a key tenet of professional sports – and a package we must deliver.”

Also present at City Hall was reigning Ironman World Champion and PTO World #4 Lucy Charles-Barclay. The Briton said: “For me, the T100 Triathlon World Tour is where our sport is heading. Having done four of the PTO 100km races now, I love the atmosphere, rivalry and challenge they bring. I have tried the Olympic distance and loved the fast-paced excitement of flat out racing, and on the other side of the spectrum I have raced and performed really well at the Ironman distance which is all about pacing and endurance. But actually putting something in the middle and bringing in athletes from the long course and from the Olympic distance, it’s just a melting pot of talent and the level of racing is higher than we’ve ever seen in the sport. I believe in what the PTO is doing and how exciting and big it could become and that’s what I want to be a part of, so my personal goal this year is the T100 tour. I’ve never focused on the 100km distance entirely before and I just want to see how far I can go over the format.”

 

Amateurs To Also Take T100 Start Line

 It will not just be professional athletes who will get the opportunity to race on the T100 Triathlon World Tour, with the PTO also announcing mass participation races for amateurs at each event, including the newly established 100km distance at six of the eight stages, including: Singapore, London, Ibiza, Lake Las Vegas, Dubai and at the Grand Final3. These Age Grouper races will give amateurs the chance to compete on the same spectacular courses as the pros as well as watch the best in the world up close and personal.

Sign-ups for the Singapore T100 triathlon and duathlon are open here.

As a result of its partnership with World Triathlon, certain stages of the Tour will also feature Age Group championship designations, with the chance to represent your country under the team of the athlete’s respective National Federation. Selection for these amateur championship events will follow the standard World Triathlon process and be outlined on the PTO and World Triathlon websites.

“Next level racing and a major event atmosphere were two of the things the 6,000 amateur athletes who took part in Singapore last year called out,” said Renouf. “So alongside the professional races, we’ll be running Age Grouper opportunities at most of the events. Registration is open on the PTO website and we look forward to welcoming all those who want to get involved.”

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