Brownlee brothers ready to take on the world again

Brownlee brothers ready to take on the world again

18 August 2016 / 07:00
They no longer share a house but brothers Alistair and Jonathan Brownlee are determined to share another Olympic podium – just don’t ask them which one gets the top step.
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The Brownlee brothers have been inseparable since reaching the top in triathlon, evident four years ago in London when Alistair stormed to gold while Jonathan – three years his junior – picked up bronze, despite a 15-second time penalty.

Since then the duo have never been fair away from the podium, with Alistair winning the 2014 European and Commonwealth Games titles – the latter seeing Jonathan come home second.

But the proud Yorkshiremen are at their most deadly when they join forces, evident in their team and mixed team relay crowns from the 2014 World Championship and Commonwealth Games respectively.

And the Brownlees, who are joined by Gordon Benson in the British team, have bad news for their rivals in Rio

“We’re brothers the whole way through,” Jonathan said. “In training we both appreciate how big an advantage it is.

“Normally if you’re so close to someone in ability you don’t train together because you have falling-outs or you’re not that close, but we’re very lucky to have that.

“And then in competition itself, we’re brothers from the start line. During the swimming and on the bike we can help each other tactically and when it gets to the run there’s not an awful lot you can do.

“But I look out for Alistair and if I want anyone to beat me, it’s definitely Alistair.”

Alistair added: “I look at it really that you want to beat the rest of the field first, and then try and beat Jonny.

“We started racing around the garden when we were very young… I’ve always wanted to beat him though. I never hold back — maybe at times it might spur me on more.”

Living in his older brothers shadow on the biggest stage hasn’t been easy for Jonathan, but he insists he is ready to write his own history in Brazil.

“I’ve done the whole younger brother thing following him. Hopefully I’ll stop following him now though and get in front,” said Jonathan.

But despite coming off the back of ankle surgery defending Olympic champion Alistair believes he will take some beating, as he declares himself in better shape than 2012.

“I’ve had good and bad points over the last four years, I was lucky enough to have one of my best days in London and if I can have that best day again I think it will be very similar," he said.

“I think my swimming and biking are probably a little bit better than they were a few years ago but it depends on my fitness and form at the time.”

Sportsbeat 2016
Rio 2016