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photo: Janos Schmidt/ITU
Groff Races to Seventh Place at ITU World Triathlon Grand Final
Groff, Jorgensen finish season with top-10 world rankings
LONDON—USA Triathlon National Team member and 2012 Olympian Sarah Groff returned to the London Olympic venue on Saturday, battling her way to a seventh-place finish in the ITU World Triathlon Series Grand Final.
Groff (Hanover, N.H.) posted a time of 2 hours, 2 minutes, 16 seconds on the 1,500-meter swim, 40-kilometer bike, 10-kilometer run course for her fourth top-10 finish of the year. The effort moves Groff into ninth place in the ITU World Triathlon Series standings, marking her third year in a row ranked amongst the top ten triathletes in the world.
Great Britain’s Non Stanford won Saturday’s showdown, giving her the top spot in the overall World Triathlon Series standings. Aileen Reid of Ireland was second, and Emma Moffatt of Australia finished third. In the overall standings, Jodie Stimpson from Great Britain and Germany’s Anne Haug finished second and third, respectively.
Gwen Jorgensen (St. Paul, Minn.) experienced a crash on the second lap of the bike and did not finish the race, but finished the year ranked fourth.
“I prepared to win today's race and was disappointed to not be able to finish. The fall happened so quickly that I’m still not sure exactly how it happened. I must have made a small error that in the rain turns into a big mistake. I am absolutely gutted – I came to London to win,” Jorgensen said. “Congratulations to all of top finishers from today and for the overall season Series. I’d also like to thank the many people who supported me this year, and all of the U.S. fans back home. I’ll leave London even more motivated, and am very much looking forward to what next year holds.”
It was a strong start for Groff, who took charge on the swim and led for most of the first lap. A consistent front-pack swimmer, Groff maintained a top position throughout the swim, coming out of the water with Moffatt. Groff and Moffatt were joined by more than 20 women to form the lead bike pack, and together they worked to keep a gap on the chase pack. By the time the group reached transition, they had a 90 second advantage.
With a quick transition, Groff found herself running in second for most of the 10k run, keeping her sights on Stanford. “You know, I went for the win and ended up seventh. You’ve got to take a risk,” Groff said. “In hindsight I should have been more conservative and run with the group, but part of this year for me is just having fun and trying new things.”
Groff was no stranger to the course in London, having finished fourth here last year. This year, she has taken a different approach to her training and racing. “After the Olympics, I think a lot of us needed a little bit of downtime,” she said. “I’ve just been focusing on different things, focusing on the life balance.”
The weather in London may have not been as idyllic as last year, but Groff was still impressed with the support around the venue from the fans.
“You show up to the Olympic venue, you think it’s never going to be the same, but this time… The Olympics was more of a celebration of sport in general, but this weekend is a whole celebration of triathlon.”
Triathlon world championship action concludes on Sunday with the ITU Standard (Olympic-Distance) Age Group World Championships set to begin in the morning, and the elite men closing out the day with the ITU World Triathlon Series Grand Final. Coverage of these races, as well aquathlon, paratriathlon, Juniors, Under-23s and age-group sprint championships, can be found on usatriathlon.org.
ITU World Triathlon Series Grand Final London
1,500m swim, 40k bike, 10k run
Women – Click here for complete results
1. Non Stanford (GBR), 2:01:32
2. Aileen Reid (IRE), 2:01:57
3. Emma Moffatt (AUS), 2:02:00
7. Sarah Groff (Hanover, N.H.), 2:02:16
DNF Gwen Jorgensen (St. Paul, Minn.)
ITU World Triathlon Series Final Rankings – Click here for complete rankings
1. Non Stanford (GBR), 4220
2. Jodie Stimpson (GBR), 3805
3. Anne Haug (GER), 3110
4. Gwen Jorgensen (USA), 3033
5. Andrea Hewitt (NZL), 3004
6. Emma Moffatt (AUS), 2906
7. Ashleigh Gentle (AUS), 2720
8. Aileen Reid (IRL), 2681
9. Sarah Groff (USA), 2295
10. Alice Betto (ITA), 2270
About USA Triathlon
Founded in 1982, USA Triathlon is proud to serve as the National Governing Body for triathlon – the fastest growing sport in the U.S. Olympic Movement – as well as duathlon, aquathlon, aquabike, winter triathlon, off-road triathlon and paratriathlon in the United States. USA Triathlon sanctions more than 4,300 races and connects with more than 550,000 members each year, making it the largest multisport organization in the world. In addition to its work with athletes, coaches, and race directors on the grassroots level, USA Triathlon provides leadership and support to elite athletes competing at international events, including International Triathlon Union (ITU) World Championships, Pan American Games and the Summer Olympic Games. USA Triathlon is a proud member of the ITU and the United States Olympic Committee (USOC).