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© Delly Carr / ITU Media / triathlon.org
Fantastic Flora crushes Cozumel in style
Posted by: John Levison
Posted on: Saturday 17th September 2016


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Flora Duffy wins the battle and the war: ITU Grand Final winner and 2016 World Champion

"...the perfect day came when I needed it, when the pressure was on"

The bike leg of today's ITU World Triathlon Series Cozumel had a definite sense of deja vu to the World Triathlon Leeds in June... but it was certainly quite a few degrees hotter in Mexico than in Yorkshire. Also - it seemed? - no signs of the team tactics which which restricted the contributions to the breakaway of the Brit pairing on the roads from Roundhay Park to Millenium Square... allegedly.

Elite Women Cozumel 2016

Straight from the swim, the British super swimmers of Jessica Learmonth and Lucy Hall were joined by Columbia Threadneedle Rankings leader Flora Duffy (BER) on the bike, and off they went. For Flora, a second place finish would be enough to earn the 2016 World Championship title, irrespective of any other result. Were Olympic Champion Gwen Jorgensen (USA) to take the win in Cozumel, Flora had no room for error though - even a third place would not be enough. She was doing everything in her skillset to try and ensure she was on one of the top two podium spots today.

Elite Women Cozumel 2016

By the 20km point on the bike the lead trio had built a 43 second lead. Edmonton winner Summer Cook (USA) and two-time World Champion Emma Moffatt (AUS) were also out of the race, as was Olympic Bronze medal winner Vicky Holland, who was involved in a low speed bike crash with Nicky Samuels (NZL), and then suffered a puncture.

With 5km of the bike remaining, the Duffy / Hall / Learmonth triumvirate had extended that margin slightly to 58 seconds over the chasers, headed by Gwen Jorgensen and 2013 World Champion, Non Stanford (GBR).

Elite Women Cozumel 2016

Jorgensen had history in mind. A third cosecutive World title would be a first in ITU history (for women), and would also be mean she would be the first triathlete to add World Championship success to Olympic Gold in the same season. A minute appeared a catchable gap given her running prowess, but she had no control over anyone else getting ahead of Flora. At T2, it was still wide open. Their lead? One minute.

Elite Women Cozumel 2016

Duffy was first out of transition and quickly alone and pushing hard. On. A. Mission.

2.5km and Gwen had gained precisely zero and Flora was looking sublime. 1:07 lead at 5km. 1:14 lead at 7.5km. Flora Duffy wanted this - and she wanted it badly...and wow, was she taking it in staggering style. Jorgensen was clear in second but making absolutely no impact in the Mexican heat. This was a AAA performance from the 28 year old Bermudian, and a truly exceptional way to become 2016 ITU World Champion.

"I'm speechless, the perfect day came when I needed it, when the pressure was on" said the new ITU World Champion.

Elite Women Cozumel 2016

Charlotte McShane earned her first WTS podium finish in a sprint for third place with Helen Jenkins (GBR), while fifth place for Ai Ueda (JPN) was enough to take the World Championship Bronze medal for 2016.

ITU World Triathlon Grand Final Cozumel - Saturday 17th September 2016
1.5km / 40km / 10km

1st - Flora Duffy (BER) - 1:57:59
2nd - Gwen Jorgensen (USA) - 1:59:16
3rd - Charlotte McShane (AUS) - 1:59:25
4th - Helen Jenkins (GBR) - 1:59:28
5th - Ai Ueda (JPN) - 1:59:39
6th - Vendula Frintova (CZE) - 1:59:44
7th - Sarah True (USA) - 1:59:58
8th - Non Stanford (GBR) - 2:00:16
9th - Mariya Shorets (RUS) - 2:00:21
10th - Ashleigh Gentle (AUS) - 2:00:34

23rd - Lucy Hall (GBR) - 2:02:19
30th - Jessica Learmonth (GBR) - 2:02:55
DNF - Vicky Holland (GBR)

Elite Women Cozumel 2016

Columbia Threadneedle Rankings - World Championship Final

GOLD: Flora Duffy (BER) - 4691 points
SILVER: Gwen Jorgensen (USA) - 4435 points
BRONZE: Ai Ueda (JPN) - 3616 points
4th: Katie Zaferes (USA) - 3437
5th: Helen Jenkins (GBR) - 3410
6th: Andrea Hewitt (NZL) - 3223
7th: Jodie Stimpson (GBR) - 3145
8th: Charlotte McShane (AUS) - 3095
9th: Sarah True (USA) - 2855
10th: Ashleigh Gentle (AUS) - 2825

Elite Women Cozumel 2016


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