A sold-out field of 4,000 athletes from 49 states, Washington, D.C. and 31 countries competed in the inaugural ITU World Triathlon Chicago Sunday. Though the course differed slightly from that the pros used, it still provided athletes with their only opportunity to experience World Triathlon Series racing in the United States this year.
The Olympic distance race kicked off a day full of triathlon. Ian Boggs, the 2014 USA Triathlon Collegiate National Champion from Indiana University, took top honors at the event with a 1:52:28, solidly winning the race with a 3:06 lead on second place Mark Harms. Dani Fischer of Wausau, Wisconsin, who won the USA Triathlon Long Course National Championship three weeks ago, won the women’s Olympic distance race on Sunday in 2:03:43. Kirsten Sass followed Fischer, crossing the finish line in 2:05:56.
A sprint race followed the Olympic-distance competition this morning, starting with a PC wave. Chris Tate won the male PC division in 1:24:49, well ahead of runner-up Joshua Stout, who finished in 1:36:19. McKayla Hanson finished the race as female PC champion in 1:49:29, while Megan O’Neil took second in 2:04:28.
Robbie Deckard from Indiana won the men’s sprint event, finishing in 1:00:55, just a bit ahead of Marc Dubrick who finished in 1:01:18. Aleena Villani of Pleasant Prairie, Wisconsin took the female title, edging out Victoria Clinton by only 20 seconds with a time of 1:09:05.
The final race of the weekend saw the elite men take to the city’s streets. Javier Gomez of Spain claimed his fourth ITU World Triathlon Series title on Sunday, further solidifying his status as the top male triathlete in the world. Though Gomez was the eighth man out of the water, he moved into third by the start of the bike. He dropped into ninth by the end of the bike, 43 seconds behind then-leader Tom Davison of New Zealand. Gomez established himself in the lead pack in the run and by the end of the third lap had pulled solidly into first place. Gomez crossed the finish line in 1:47:21, eight seconds ahead of Portugal’s Joao Pereira. Mario Mola, also of Spain, finished third.
Joe Maloy was the first American across the finish line in 1:49:24 for 17th overall. Hunter Kemper and William Huffman finished second and third.
American Gwen Jorgensen became the winningest woman in ITU World Triathlon Series history on a steamy Saturday afternoon in dramatic fashion when she won the elite women’s race. After coming out of the swim in 15th place, Jorgensen dropped back to 18th during the bike. Jorgensen, historically strong in the run, came back from a 66-second deficit, closing the gap to 50 seconds after the first lap, 33 seconds after the second lap, five seconds after the third lap, and passed then-leader Helen Jenkins of Great Britain during the final straightaway up Congress Parkway, adding even more cushion to her lead around Buckingham Fountain and crossed the finish line in 1:55:33, 20 seconds ahead of Jenkins. With the win, Jorgensen, a Wisconsin native, captured her sixth ITU World Triathlon Series title and further solidified her position on top of the ITU World Triathlon Series standings.
Jenkins finished second in 1:55:53, while Japan’s Juri Ide rounded out the top three with a 1:56:00 finish.
Nearly 60 paratriathletes competed in the opening competition of ITU World Triathlon Chicago weekend. Athletes representing five different physically challenged categories raced the 750-meter swim, 20-kilometer bike and 5-kilometer run course through Grant Park in a preview of the ITU Paratriathlon World Championships, which will take place in Chicago in 2015.
Presenting sponsor, local paratriathlete club Dare2tri, saw two of its athletes win their respective divisions, with Hailey Danisewicz taking the female PT2 title and Mary Kate Callahan winning the female PT1 competition.
Bill Chaffey from Australia had the overall fastest time in the paratriathlon competition, winning the male PT1 division in a time of 1:02:04. On the women’s side, Clare Cunningham’s 1:13:27 both won the female PT4 division and was the fastest overall female time at the event.
For complete results, click here.