London 2012 bronze medallist Jonathan Brownlee is targeting revenge when the ITU World Triathlon Series gets under way on Sunday in Auckland.
Brownlee finished as runner-up in last year’s series – edged out of top prize by Javier Gomez, after the Spaniard beat him in a memorable sprint finish in London’s Hyde Park.
“To lose in a sprint finish was tough. I used it this winter to push harder in sessions because I don’t want to be in that same situation again,” said Brownlee, who clinched the 2012 world title in Auckland.
“I’d like to make the swim and the bike really hard. My cycling has definitely improved and I’d like to use that.”
The women’s race is missing world champion, Non Stanford, but it features eight of the remaining top ten. Jodie Stimpson, overall runner-up to Stanford last year, starts the race as number one.
Helen Jenkins returns to Series action following a welcome return to international racing in New Plymouth, where she finished fourth.
Jenkins missed the whole of last season through injury but returns with TeamGB Olympic teammates, Vicky Holland and Lucy Hall, who are both in Auckland.
Auckland is the first of eight rounds, with athletes needing to score points in five rounds and the Grand Final in Edmonton in August in order to be in contention for the ITU world title.