Holland and Stanford claim Triathlon World Series medals in Hamburg

Vicky Holland and Non Stanford led the way for Britain’s Triathletes at the World Series event in Hamburg, claiming two spots on the podium behind ITU world champion Gwen Jorgensen.

Holland got closest to the unbeaten Jorgensen than anyone else so far this year, pushing the American all the way and missing out by just five seconds with a time of 57:13 minutes.

Sophie Coldwell emerged from the water in fourth place at the start of the sprint distance race, while Holland also made it into the front pack, alongside Jorgensen, for the bike leg of the race.

Stanford and Jodie Stimpson were not far behind, but when Stimpson was involved in a crash that sheared the rear gear mechanism off her bike it was impossible for her to continue.

And after Stanford bridged the gap to the leaders, she and Holland led the run alongside Sarah True (USA) for 2.5km until Jorgensen caught them.

But it wasn’t until the final few metres of the race that the world champion got away to claim her eleventh straight ITU World Triathlon Series win.

“I thought I had a chance of getting closer maybe than anyone has done this year,” said Holland.

“She surged a couple of times and I managed to cover those, but I knew in the final 1500m I was pretty much on my limit.

“You can’t underestimate Gwen, as she is unbeaten at the moment.

“But I’m really pleased, particularly with the fact I had a great swim, came out in the front pack, worked hard on the bike and then a had good run. I had a good all round race today.”

Stanford was 11 seconds further back in third but, having been absent from the Series podium since she won the ITU world title in 2013, was thrilled with a return to form at the right time.

She said: “I thought, ‘you know what, we need to get two British girls on the podium’, and that gave me an extra kick at the end because it’s been far too long. To finally share a podium with Vicky is fantastic.

“Over the last month training has gone really well, so I was confident in that respect, but it doesn’t always translate into a performance.

“To finally actually execute on race day is a massive relief.”

Meanwhile Gordon Benson and Mark Buckingham were also in action in the men’s event, finishing 28th and 32nd respectively in the absence of Alistair and Jonathan Brownlee.

Both withdrew from the Hamburg showdown, with Jonathan recovering from a stress fracture and Alistair resting in order to be ready for the Rio Test Event in Brazil on August 2.

© Sportsbeat 2015