USA Triathlon Weekend Notebook: Podium Bliss in Bermuda
by USA Triathlon
It's been a bustling second half of the season for Team USA. The action has been piping hot for the last few months as we near the end of the 2022 racing season. It seems like a lot of the U.S. elites have been putting in the work to go out with a bang... and WE ARE HERE FOR IT!
This weekend was no different as the elites returned for another World Triathlon Championship Series race, this time heading to the beautiful island of Bermuda.
And fortunately for USA Triathlon fans everywhere, it was another successful day on the podium!
Let's get into it!
2022 World Triathlon Championship Series Bermuda
This has been a long WTCS season. Mostly because technically, the season started last year in the fall of 2021, so realistically we have been waiting to crown a 2022 World Champion for over a year!
But finally we made it to the penultimate event at WTCS Bermuda - the sixth WTCS event of 2022.
Bermuda is a tough course. This year featured athletes taking on the Olympic-distance and as beautiful as Bermuda is, it also is very hilly and technical, so it's quite the challenge for athletes.
The men's race was first. Fresh onto the start line with an extra hour of sleep due to daylight savings time, it was go time!
We had five U.S. athletes competing: Kevin McDowell, Matt McElroy, Chase McQueen, Seth Rider and Brent Demarest.
Out of the swim, the men were spread out, but within reach to make it onto the main chasing pack on the bike.
But like Bermuda does, the hills were alive and caused a lot of mechanical issues for a lot of athletes.
McDowell and Demarest were victims of that.
And then Seth Rider also had to pull out of the race.
Which left McElroy and McQueen as the only two to make it to the finish line,
McElroy finished 16th overall, crossing with a time of 1:51:09. He ended up improving nine spots in the overall rankings with his result. McQueen then finished 37th.
Then the rain started trickling in and it was the women up next.
If you tuned in online, then you saw basically the population of the whole island show up to support their hometown hero of Flora Duffy. While Duffy does race for her home nation of Bermuda, she lives and trains a lot in Boulder, Colorado... so can we claim a portion of her too? ;)
The U.S. women on the docket were Taylor Spivey, Taylor Knibb, Kirsten Kasper, Summer Rappaport and Erika Ackerlund.
This race was coming off of a fire weekend last weekend for the two Taylors, who both smashed it and earned major podiums in two major competitions. On one hand was Spivey, who ended up being named the runner-up in the Super League Championship Series and on the other hand was Knibb, who became the youngest female ever to win a IRONMAN 70.3 World Championship.
As always, give it up for the Taylors!
Luckily for the crowds, Duffy did not disappoint and basically from the moment the gun went off decided that she was going to take control. Which she did and dominated all the way to the finish line.
However, it was Knibb who also put up quite the show!
After trailing in the water, it took her some work on the first part of the bike to make it into the main chase pack, which included compatriots Spivey, Kasper and Rappaport.
But Knibb didn't stop there and she broke away to ride the last part of the 38.5KM bike alone in third position.
USAs @taylorknibb has opened up a gap and now riding solo in 3rd, 32-seconds down on the leading duo. Spivey, Potter, Lindemann, Lopes and Jackson closely following.— TriathlonLIVE (@triathlonlive) November 6, 2022
Watch LIVE now: https://t.co/lP9OWNcx52 pic.twitter.com/2u5xVNB77E
Onto the run, Knibb pushed the pace and was able to move into the silver position, which she held onto until the finish line! She claimed her second WTCS podium of the year and her best finish of the season.
With the silver, Knibb moved up 4 spots in the rankings, where she now sits at fifth overall going into the WTCS Finals in Abu Dhabi at the end of the month. She is just 179 points away from an overall Series podium.
Spivey trailed closely behind to finish fifth in Bermuda! Ackerlund then finished 14th and Rappaport 25th.
Unfortunately, Kasper also found herself needing to pull out with a DNF due to a mechanical on the bike.
Only one more race to go in the WTCS season. Who will be crowned the 2022 World Champions?!