Triathlon News & Notes: Doping Violation, Olympic Shoe Count, and More

A look at some of the news we’ve picked up in the sport over the past seven days.

Photo: Photo by Patrick Smith/Getty Images

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USA Triathlon Foundation offering virtual wine series

Winemaker Malek Amrani and 2016 Olympian Joe Maloy will host a trio of virtual wine tastings sponsored by USA Triathlon Foundation. Scheduled for Sept. 2, 9, and 22 (all at 5 p.m. PT), the tastings will each focus on different Vice Wine varietals, while Amrani and Maloy talk wine-making, triathlon, fitness, and more. Sign up for just one or all three–the tastings are free to participate, but you must purchase the specific wines in advance.

Inspiring paratriathletes set to race Escape from Alcatraz

As if it isn’t impressive enough to complete the Escape from Alcatraz Triathlon, some competitors in Sunday’s race have ultra-inspiring stories. Among them? A host of  Challenged Athlete Foundation (CAF) participants, who all have permanent physical disabilities. Among them are 2016 paratriathlon Olympic bronze medalist Mohamed Lahna, who will next compete in paracycling in Tokyo while representing Morocco; Dr. Ed Blumenstock, a 77-year-old who lost his leg below the knee in a 2018 cycling accident; and 18-year-old Breezy Bochenek, who lost her leg above the knee to cancer, and is now training for her first Ironman. Learn more about CAF here.

RELATED: Recalled: 40 Years of the Escape from Alcatraz Triathlon

Russian, Ukrainian triathletes suspended for potential anti-doping violations

Igor Polyanskiy, a 31-year-old who competed in both the mixed relay and men’s individual triathlon races at the Tokyo Games, has been suspended over a potential anti-doping violation, according to World Triathlon. A sample collected from Polyanskiy during an out-of-competition test on July 21 was found to contain genetically engineered Erythropoietin (EPO), a type of blood doping that can help improve an athlete’s endurance.

This is the second professional triathlete to be suspended by World Triathlon for EPO use in the same week: On July 23, a sample from Ukrainian triathlete Yuliya Yelistratova collected in Tokyo also returned an Adverse Analytical Finding (AAF) for EPO. Yelistratova, a three-time Olympian who had been provisionally suspended for another AAF test in June, was not allowed to compete in the Olympics. Both athletes have the right to request the analysis of the B-sample and to challenge the provisional suspension before the Court of Arbitration for Sport—Anti-Doping Division, according to World Triathlon.

Flora Duffy is (likely) the most Googled Bermudian ever

First, she made history as the first Bermudian to win an Olympic gold medal. Now, Flora Duffy can say she’s likely the most Googled native, as well. Bernews dug into Google Trends to see just how swiftly Duffy’s name soared to the top of searchable terms after her Olympic win, reporting that she was the top trend in both New Zealand and Switzerland–and 30th worldwide–in the hours following the race, with her name outranking billions of terms and questions. Now, nearly two weeks later, Duffy is still the top searched female triathlete in the world, further cementing her local legend status in Bermuda. “While we cannot state for sure as historical records are not available, we are not aware of any other Bermudian having [been] ranked so high in the worldwide Google Trends,” they reported.

RELATED: Bermuda Celebrates Flora Duffy’s Historic Gold Medal

Nike super shoes are tops in track in Tokyo, but not in triathlon

Nike shoes reigned supreme on the track in Tokyo, with runners who were sporting the Swoosh taking 21 of 33 podium spots in individual events, including the marathon. But that wasn’t necessarily the case in triathlon, with just one individual medalist, New Zealand’s Hayden Wilde, running in Nike Vaporfly Next% 2 in his third-place effort. As for the other medalists, winners Norway’s Kristian Blummenfelt and Duffy both ran in ASICS Metaspeed Sky, while the silver medalists, Brits Alex Yee and Georgia Taylor-Brown, rocked the New Balance FuelCell RC Elite v2. Women’s bronze medalist Katie Zaferes wore a pair from 361°.

RELATED: 10 of This Year’s Best Super Shoes, Tested

Podcast Notes

  • Paratriathlete Allysa Seely, a gold medalist in the Rio Games, heads to The Triathlete Hour to share her fascinating story and the recent health challenges she faced while gearing up for Tokyo.
  • On the latest in Triathlete’s Fitter & Faster series, physical therapist and athletic trainer Dr. Shefali Christopher chats about the common causes of injuries among triathletes and how to prevent them.
  • Mirinda Carfrae talks all about being a triathlete mom of two (and reveals her return to racing after having son Finnian in January will be Timberman 70.3 on Aug. 22) on The Empower Hour podcast.
  • Thinking about taking your running off-road? This week’s Endurance Nation podcast is all about why you should, plus other tips on mixing things up to get the most out of your run.
  • The MX Endurance podcast features a great chat between host Chris “Macca” McCormack and Olympic champion Kristian Blummenfelt, along with his coach, Arlid Tveiten. They talk about Norway’s rise to the top of the sport, Blummenfelt’s race in Tokyo, plus his plans for the future. (Blummenfelt has been busy: He also had a chat with Greg Bennett after his win.)
  • Yvonne Spencer, founder of Fast Chix, a community of women seeking to be a better version of themselves, talks about the power of community when it comes to conquering goals on the Triathlete Mindset podcast.
  • Angela Naeth joins the Zwift Powerup Tri podcast to discuss her love of gravel riding and why more triathletes are taking to the discipline.
  • Triathlete’s own Editor-in-Chief Kelly O’Mara is featured on the TriDoc podcast, plus a discussion on evidence in support of platelet rich plasma injections (PRP).

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