Two Weeks Left In Olympic Qualifying Period

The ITU World Triathlon Series Madrid race will be the final opportunity for athletes to earn points.

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The ITU World Triathlon Series Madrid race on May 26 will be the final opportunity for athletes to earn points.

The two-year ITU Olympic Qualification Period is almost at an end after the penultimate race in the city where triathlon was invented. The ITU World Triathlon San Diego held plenty of hopes and dreams, some were realised, some were not. Here is the updated Olympic simulation, which is a guide to what the London field what look like if qualification finished tomorrow, and an early look at the Madrid round of the ITU World Triathlon Series.

While the New Zealand men’s team looked fairly certain to send three men to London before San Diego, their newly named three-man Olympic team all finished in the top-10, which has pretty much secured it. Ryan Sissons claimed sixth, his best series result, Bevan Docherty eighth and Kris Gemmell 10th to move New Zealand from sixth place to third, only behind Great Britain and Germany. They are followed by France, Spain and Russia, and now Australia and Canada sitting in places seven and eight, as Portugal dropped down to just two men’s spots.

Before San Diego, Joao Pereira had Portugal sitting in seventh place, ahead of Australia in eighth and Canada in ninth respectively. Given Australia’s third athlete Courtney Atkinson and Canada’s third athlete Simon Whitfield were separated by just 64 points, it set up a tussell between two of the sports veterans. That ensued in the race, as Whitfield just pipped Atkinson in 11th place to 13th, but what happened behind them actually had more impact on the results. Pereira finished 47th, which meant Whitfield and Atkinson moved ahead for the time being, while Brent McMahon finished in 29th place. That means it’s now McMahon as Canada’s third athlete, and while he has more points than Pereira, 149 to be exact, and that moved Canada to eighth place, it now means it’s likely to come down to a battle between McMahon and Pereira as to which NOC can send three men to London 2012. However, Atkinson and Australia’s three chances are still not safe either, Atkinson is just 10 points ahead of Whitfield and 140 poins ahead of McMahon. It’s all going to come down to the wire in Madrid, as Australia, Canada and Portugal fight for the chance to send three men to the Olympic Games.

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