Tim Hellwig proves unbeatable on World Cup tour with gold in Tongyeong
The World Cup tour moved to Tongyeong, South Korea, earlier this morning where the world’s best athletes battled it out in a challenging sprint-distance race format. 65 Elite men lined along the South Sea for the 2023 World Triathlon Cup Tongyeong, one of the strongest fields the tour has hosted.
Back-to-back wins for Germany’s Tim Hellwig with World Cup gold in Tongyeong. A powerful set-up for Portugal’s Ricardo Batista which resulted in silver and bronze for Sam Dickinson of Great Britain.
Jamie Riddle, who became South African champion last weekend, led the field through the swim. New Zealand’s Dylan McCullough, who was 9th place in the recent World Triathlon Cup Chengdu and Switzerland’s Simon Westermann were right on his heels. The field of men was stretched out across the 750m swim as they went around the buoys back into shore to commence the next portion of the sprint-distance race.
Out of the swim and onto the 20km bike course it was Germany’s Tim Hellwig and last weekend’s champion in Chengdu who took control of the segment through the first lap.
20 seconds separated the leading nine athletes from the next group, which was being driven by Norway’s Casper Stornes, who was riding in tenth place.
Hellwig, McCullough and Ricardo Batista exchanged the lead up front, rotating through and keeping the pace high with the lead group, clawing out over the chasers.
There was now 22 seconds between the front nine and the big group trying to attack back at the leaders and in hot pursuit with the likes of Australia’s Jake Birtwhistle putting in an almighty effort to drive the group.
Jonas Schomburg, Hellwig, McCullough, Riddle, Sam Dickinson, Jack Willis, Westerman, Ricardo Batista and Aiden Longcroft-Harris were the top nine athletes taking on the undulations of the bike course in Tongyeong.
By the final stage of the bike course the same lead 9 athletes had worked so hard to give themselves a 35-second cushion as they entered the final transition of the day.
Willis and Dickinson charged out of transition and led the initial stage of the 5km run. Batista was on the shoulders of the British athletes and it wasn’t long before the motoring power of Hellwig moved through to lead the race.
Mislawchuk was making moves further down the group. The Canadian was overtaking athletes and was the second fastest runner on course today (00:14:31) after Great Britain’s Hugo Milner (00:14:24).
Hellwig found another gear again to run away from Batista and sprint down the finish chute to take gold in Tongyeong, making it back-to-back World Cup wins for the German with victory last weekend in Chengdu. Hellwig closes the perfect season with today’s World Cup gold.
“Super pleased with the result. I mean, it has been an amazing 2023, so to finish it off with another gold, yeah, sums up an almost perfect year for me,” said gold medallist Hellwig.
Batista put in an almighty boost to the finish line to claim a hard-fought silver in today’s World Cup.
“It was a really fast race from the start. We went a lot with a little group in the front and we tried to not lose time on the bike and then on the run, it was a fast run and at the end, I just tried to follow him and I’m really happy with my second place today,” said silver medallist Batista.
Sam Dickinson held onto third and came across the line to earn bronze in Tongyeong.
“We had a game plan just to take it out hard and make it a hard race. So fantastic to see Jack (Willis) up there with me as well and the two of us just, well, we’re really used to that from training and so nice to be, nice to be showing off the Union flag at the front of the race,” said bronze medallist Dickinson.