Three races, three wins. Spain’s Javier Gomez threw-down yet another stellar performance in Yokohama on Saturday, in a race that may have reset the world order in triathlon.
Previously in every WTS race Alistair Brownlee and Jonathan Brownlee had started together, at least one of them had finished in the medals. In Japan, they were pushed off the podium by Spain’s Mario Mola and South Africa’s Richard Murray.
However it was Gomez who yet again re-affirmed his place at the top of the WTS pecking order in 2014, as he pulled out his most impressive win yet this season. While in Auckland and Cape Town Gomez dropped Jonny Brownlee with a few kilometres to go to assure his win, he didn’t capture the Yokohama victory until the final metrer.
With the Brownlees falling off the pace halfway through the run, Mola and Gomez dropped Murray with just over a kilometer to go, and entered the blue carpet together. While Mola looked hesitantly over his shoulder twice at Gomez, he wasn’t caught off guard in the throw down. The pair sprinted side by side almost the length of the finishing chute, before Gomez lunged to the finishing tape when it counted, capturing his third consecutive WTS win in 2014 in 1:45:31. His bid to become only the second man to win four ITU World Championships is on track.
“With Mario and Richard, then run pretty fast and I was just about to drop in the second or third lap and somehow I managed to get up. Then I got down to the final few hundred metres, I knew that Mario is pretty fast but I just gave it everything, the third sprint I’ve won in my life, so I’m pretty happy,’ Gomez said. “Third win of the year, I can’t believe it’s going so good.”
Alistair Brownlee finished fourth and Jonathan Brownlee in fifth, ending his run of 17 consecutive World Triathlon Series podium places. While neither Brownlee made the podium, it was a good day for the British team with four athletes in the top ten, including Aaron Harris and Adam Bowden. Alongside Mola and Gomez, Spain also had three with Fernando Alarza running himself into 7th place.
Yokohama, Japan – May 17, 2014
1.5K swim, 40K bike, 10K run
1. Javier Gomez Noya ESP 1:45:31
2. Mario Mola ESP 1:45:31
3. Richard Murray RSA 1:46:00
4. Alistair Brownlee GBR 1:46:27
5. Jonathan Brownlee GBR 1:46:29
6. Aaron Harris GBR 1:46:38
7. Fernando Alarza ESP 1:46:45
8. Hirokatsu Tayama JPN 1:46:52
9. Adam Bowden GBR 1:47:16
10. Andrea Salvisberg SUI 1:47:29