2008 in Review: Cont. Champs

by World Triathlon Admin on 31 Dec, 2008 12:01

Year In Review: Continental Champs

With 2008 being the all-important Olympic year, the Continental Championships represented not only regional supremacy but also guaranteed spots on the Beijing Olympic start lines for the winning countries.  The only exception was the Pan American championships which had designated last summers Pan Am Games in Rio as the direct entry to Beijing for the winning nations.  The competition was fierce at all five Continental Championships as many of the top athletes were not only preparing for the Olympic Games, but also helping their countries to the start line.

2008 Yasmine Hammamet ATU Triathlon African Championships, Tunisia
March 8, 2008

The action kicked off on a big weekend in early March.  South Africa dominated the 2008 ATU African Triathlon Championships in Tunisia as Mari Rabie and Hendrik DeVilliers, who were both crowned South African National champions in February, showed their strong form again by taking gold at the African continental championships.

It was cold and windy as I like it because its tough. Ive been sick for two weeks so I wasnt sure how it would go, said Rabie. My swim was a bit off from where it used to be but the plan was just to go head down from the start. Then on the bike I felt really good, I think I got off two minutes off the chasing pack which was four or five girls. Then on the run I was just working hard to keep that gap and make it bigger and bigger so I felt really good.

It was a cold race but luckily it warmed up a little bit before the elite race in the afternoon so it wasnt too bad Im just happy with how the race went. I had a really good swim, felt strong on the bike, got a little bit of a break there and felt good on the run. My runs not really up to scratch but Im really happy with the way my season has started having done three solid races, said DeVilliers.  Click here for photo gallery

Elite Women Final Results
1 Rabie, Mari (RSA) 02:04:00  
2 Roberts, Kate (RSA) 02:07:02  
3 Lanza, Beatrice (ITA) 02:07:33

Elite Men Final Results
1 De Villiers, Hendrik (RSA) 01:50:53  
2 Wolfaardt, Erhard (RSA) 01:51:03  
3 Degham, Toumy (FRA) 01:51:14  

Under23 Women Final Results
1 Belkadi, Laurie (FRA) 02:16:38  
2 St Louis, Fabienne Aline (MRI) 02:19:01

Under23 Men Final Results
1 Lescure, Aurlien (FRA) 01:52:23  
2 Essadiq, Medhi (ITU) 01:54:16  
3 Honore, Cedric (MRI) 02:18:50  

Click here for all results from the 2008 African Championships

2008 Wellington OCA Triathlon Oceania Championships, New Zealand
March 9, 2008

Blustery but warm conditions greeted triathletes in the OCA Triathlon Oceania Championships in Wellington, New Zealand where Australias Emma Moffatt and Shane Reed of New Zealand won the elite womens and mens races respectively.

Moffatt was hugely impressive and looked like she could run another ten kilometres when she crossed the line almost two minutes clear of her countrywoman and silver medallist Annabel Luxford. A further two minutes back was New Zealands Nicky Samuels in third.

In the mens event, the story would be whether Australia could come away with a victory and claim a third Olympic spot. The traditional triathlon powerhouse was on the bubble and was currently in a position to only send two athletes to Beijing. Their chances were further hampered by the withdrawal of top contenders Craig Walton and Peter Robertson, who did not start the race.

That would leave the door open for Reed to take the win with teammate Bevan Docherty taking silver.  James Seear of Australia had a strong race for third.

It was an emotional win for Reed.

My grandfather passed away this week and the funeral was on Friday, but Im sure he was up there watching over me today, I was very much racing for him today. I felt strong all day and Im delighted obviously to win and also to book New Zealand a third spot at Beijing. I just hope I havent peaked too early because I know have it all to do again in Mooloolaba in three weeks. I guess I just have to go there and win again.  Click here for photo gallery

Elite Women Final Results
1 Moffatt, Emma (AUS) 02:06:35  
2 Luxford, Annabel (AUS) 02:08:11  
3 Samuels, Nicky (NZL) 02:10:30  

Elite Men Final Results
1 Reed, Shane (NZL) 01:55:29  
2 Docherty, Bevan (NZL) 01:55:42  
3 Seear, James (AUS) 01:56:12  

Under23 Women Final Results
1 Sheedy-Ryan, Felicity (AUS) 02:12:37  
2 Elvery, Anna (NZL) 02:18:25  
3 Seebold, Jacqui (NZL) 02:18:30  

Under23 Men Final Results
1 Dodds, Tony (NZL) 01:57:37  
2 Visser, Benjamin (NZL) 01:57:38  
3 Van Barneveld, Martin (NZL) 01:58:09  

Click here for all results from the 2008 Oceania Championships

2008 Mazatlan PATCO Triathlon Pan American Championship, Mexico
April 19, 2008

Two relative newcomers to the Elite triathlon world pulled upset victories at the 2008 PATCO Triathlon Pan American Championships in the resort city of Mazatlan, Mexico. Jillian Petersen and Matt Chrobat of the United States ran away with the continental titles after thrilling break aways on the bike in both competitions surprised many top veterans who were unable to close the gap. This is the first major title for both young athletes and makes it the second year in a row for the U.S. sweep of the gold medals.

In the womens race Petersen, whos highest finish in an ITU race was third at the 2008 Nevis Pan American Cup a month earlier, crossed the line first in a time of 1 hour 56 minutes and 36 seconds. In three short years the ex-Collegiate runner has gone from competing in her first triathlon to Pan American Champion.

In the mens race, the 24-year old Chrabot, whos previous best result was a second at the 2007 Kelowna Pan American Cup, comfortably finished in a time of 1 hour 47 minutes and 9 seconds, over a minute ahead of 2008 Olympian and pre-race favourite Jarrod Shoemaker from the U.S. Shoemaker, however, managed to nudge out Francisco Serrano of Mexico in a final sprint for the silver.  Click here for complete photo gallery

Elite Women Final Results
1 Petersen, Jillian (USA) 01:56:36  
2 Groves, Lauren (CAN) 01:58:31  
3 Corona, Adriana Fabiola (MEX) 01:59:12  

Elite Men Final Results
1 Chrabot, Matt (USA) 01:46:09  
2 Shoemaker, Jarrod (USA) 01:47:27  
3 Serrano, Francisco (MEX) 01:47:28  

Under23 Women Final Results
1 Riveros Diaz, Barbara (CHI) 01:59:47  
2 Spearing, Kerry (CAN) 02:00:13  
3 Whipple, Justine (USA) 02:00:14  

Under23 Men Final Results
1 Symonds, Jeff (CAN) 01:48:24  
2 Fernandes, Marcus Vinicius (BRA) 01:49:01  
3 Bryden, Jordan (CAN) 01:49:22  

Junior Women Final Results
1 Brault, Sarah-Anne (CAN) 01:07:13  
2 Nivon Machoud, Ruth (MEX) 01:07:20  
3 Coates, Kyla (CAN) 01:07:53  

Junior Men Final Results
1 Gonzalez, Rodrigo (MEX) 01:00:46  
2 Pickhardt, Willy (USA) 01:00:59  
3 Fischer, Carlos (VEN) 01:01:13  

Click here for all results from the 2008 Pan American Championships

2008 Guanzhou ASTC Triathlon Asian Championships, China
May 2, 2008

Japan swept mens and womens gold at this years ASTC Asian Championships in Guanzhou, China. Ai Ueda won the womens crown while Ryosuke Yamamoto took the mens title in a stunning upset over Kazakh Daniil Sapunov. Both Ueda and Yamamoto earned automatic spots on the Japanese Olympic team as the event was a pre-determined Olympic qualifier by the Japanese Triathlon Union.

Ueda led a Japanese sweep in the womens field of the 2008 Asian championships as she crossed the line with a time of 2 hours 3 minutes and 18 seconds to claim her second elite Asian title.

In the mens field, all eyes were on the strong Kazakh team that included Sapunov and 1999 world champion Dmitriy Gaag. But Yamamoto posted the fastest run split of the day to manufacture the upset over the defending champion Sapunov. Yamamoto crossed the line at 1 hour 50 minutes and 5 seconds, comfortably ahead of Sapunov who prevented a Japanese sweep of the podium as Yuichi Hosoda who took the bronze. Gaag failed to finish the race.  Click here for complete photo gallery

Elite Women Final Results
1 Ueda, Ai (JPN) 02:03:18  
2 Niwata, Kiyomi (JPN) 02:04:26  
3 Ide, Juri (JPN) 02:05:20  

Elite Men Final Results
1 Yamamoto, Ryosuke (JPN) 01:50:05  
2 Sapunov, Daniil (KAZ) 01:50:42  
3 Hosoda, Yuichi (JPN) 01:51:22

Click here for all results from the 2008 Asian Championships

2008 Lisbon ETU Triathlon European Championships, Portugal
May 10, 2008

Portugals prodigious Vanessa Fernandes won a record-breaking fifth consecutive European Championship, taking gold with a time of 2 hours, 5 minutes and 46 seconds. Italian veteran Nadia Cortassa took the silver, her fourth career medal at European championships. Swede Lisa Norden continued her breakthrough season, out-sprinting last years bronze medallist Nicola Spirig of Switzerland down the stretch for the bronze.

It was a dream today. There were lots of people giving me strength, said Fernandes at the finish line. It is very important for me to show these people in Portugal what triathlon is. I can show Portugal what Portuguese athletes can do.

Frederic Belaubre
, the champion from 2006 and 2005, led a French gold-silver sweep in the mens competition. Tony Moulai took the silver while Swiss Olivier Marceau grabbed the bronze in an exciting photo finish. Surprisingly, defending champion Javier Gomez finished in seventh place, more than a minute and a half behind the champion Belaubre.  The race marked the first since the world championships in 2006 that Gomez failed to make the podium, an impressive streak that stretched 16 races.  Click here for complete photo gallery

Elite Women Final Results
1 Fernandes, Vanessa (POR) 02:05:46  
2 Cortassa, Nadia (ITA) 02:06:24  
3 Norden, Lisa (SWE) 02:06:43  

Elite Men Final Results
1 Belaubre, Frederic (FRA) 01:53:03  
2 Moulai, Tony (FRA) 01:53:23  
3 Marceau, Olivier (SUI) 01:53:54  

Junior Women Final Results
1 Charayron, Emmie (FRA) 01:04:24  
2 McWilliam, Kirsty (GBR) 01:04:36  
3 Moniz, Anais (POR) 01:04:50  

Junior Men Final Results
1 Luis, Vincent (FRA) 00:59:04  
2 Silva, Joao (POR) 00:59:04  
3 Brownlee, Jonathan (GBR) 00:59:22

Click here for all results from the 2008 European Championships

2008 Pulpi ETU U23 and Youth Triathlon European Championships, Spain
September 6, 2008

Now an Olympic silver medalist, Vanessa Fernandes raced for the first time since the Beijing Olympic Games and showed no rust in a dominating performance. Fernandes took gold at the Under23 European Triathlon Championships in Pulpi, Spain. She crossed the line more than two minutes ahead of her closest competitor, fellow Olympian Yuliya Sapunova of the Ukraine who took the silver. Frances Jeanne Collonge grabbed the bronze.

Fernandes Portuguese teammate Joao Silva was later crowned the new under23 European triathlon champion. His compatriot Miguel Arraiolos finished in second place, meaning Portugal reached a historic gold-silver success. Russian Olympian Dmitry Polyansky won the bronze medal.  Click here for photo gallery

Under23 Women Final Results
1 Fernandes, Vanessa (POR) 02:09:35  
2 Sapunova, Yuliya (UKR) 02:11:49  
3 Collonge, Jeanne (FRA) 02:12:55  

Under23 Men Final Results
1 Silva, Joao (POR) 01:57:37  
2 Arraiolos, Miguel (POR) 01:57:43  
3 Polyansky, Dmitry (RUS) 01:58:21

Click here for all results from the 2008 Under23 European Championships

Rabie rides to gold at the 2008 African Championships

Reed savours victory at the 2008 Oceania Championships

Olympic silver medalist Vanessa Fernandes captures a fifth consecutive European title

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