During the month of July, Turkish athletics aficionados from Alanya to Antalya will no doubt be keeping a close eye on the 2013 Alanya ETU Triathlon European Championships, taking place right at their doorstep. Expected to be an exceedingly close contest, this competition could also boost Turkey’s profile as a venue for this type of event.
The main deciding factor of these Championships is expected to be running, as is becoming traditional in ITU racing. Excellent backhalf runners such as Mario Mola, Alessandro Fabian or the UK’s own Non Stanford will all be present at the competition, guaranteeing a nail-biting scrummage for the finish line. Stanford in particular is a heavy favourite to win the Women’s bracket, having achieved excellent positions in all her races since winning the U23 World Championship last October. The young British runner came 1st in Quarteira (Portugal), 2nd in the World Series in San Diego, and 1st again in the World Series in Madrid, justifying the high odds she is being given.
Hot on her heels, however, will be Germany’s Rebecca Robisch, who placed 2nd in every international race in 2013, having achieved silver in Quarteira, Cremona and — indeed — Antalya. With these two fierce competitors vying for first place, and a strong contingent of competitors, the Women’s race should be the one to keep an eye on.
Over in the men’s section, Russia’s Ivan Vasiliev is a strong favourite to win, not only on the back of some strong results this year, but also due to his history of success in Alanya: a 1st place in 2012 and a 3rd in 2011. His main competitor will be countryman Dmitry Polyanskiy, seeing as champions Javier Gomez and Alistair Brownlee will not be present at this event. However, the Italian contingent – with experienced runners Mario Mola and Alessandro Fabian and 2012 European Junior Champion Matthias Steinwandter — could cause the Soviets some problems. In the absence of the Brownlees, the UK’s main competitor will be Adam Bowden, who has two Top 8 finishes in the 2013 World Series to his name. Overall, this race is expected to be significantly more open and less predictable than the women’s, warranting a look by fans of the sport.
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