Georgia Taylor-Brown Battles The Elements In Dominant Munich Display

The Bahrain Victorious Scorpion’s No 1 performer is defending Super League champion by virtue of four runners-up finishes last year and was due a top spot on the podium.

Jm Super League Munich Championship 2022 Jm322500

It could hardly have been a more comprehensive performance as the Brit led from the first transition and never looked troubled as she solo time-trialled to the tape.

Cheetahs’ Sophie Coldwell outkicked the Rhinos’ Taylor Spivey for second, but despite having the fastest swim and run lap, London champ Cassandre Beaugrand never looked comfortable on the bike and was one of the first to be eliminated.

The Olympiapark, constructed for the 1972 Olympics, was the second stop on the 2022 Super League Triathlon Championship Series and the rain started teeming down as the women lined up on the pontoon for the Enduro format – three continuous swim-bike-run mini triathlons over a 300m swim, 4km cycle and 1.6km run.

Beaugrand, who looked in supreme form in winning in London last Sunday, led out the first 300m swim, but it was Sian Rainsley who sped through transition to earn the first short chute for Tim Don’s Eagles.

Taylor-Brown was third out of the water, but immediately imposed herself on the slick bike course – that had witnessed several crashes in practice – with Sophie Coldwell and Rainsley following her into T2.

Beaugrand was one of those who had come down on Saturday and with confidence dented was the biggest loser on the bike leg, dropping to last place starting the first run.

Taylor-Brown completed the first mini tri in 15:50 extending her lead to 21.8 seconds, as Beth Potter and Spivey caught Coldwell and Rainsley to make a chase pack of four. Beaugrand posted the fastest run split, but still re-entered the water at the back.

Spivey showed she’s retained the form that gave her a runner-up spot in London last weekend by cutting the gap on the swim, with Coldwell and Rainsley for company and Potter distanced – falling to 10th place by the end of the bike. At the front, Taylor-Brown was enjoying lapping athletes, with Beaugrand and Germany’s 2021 world junior champion Jule Behrens on debut among those eliminated.

Heading into the second run, the gap from Taylor-Brown to the chasers held at 20 seconds, but Spivey and Coldwell managed to put time into Rainsley – who would have the benefit of the Short Chute on the final run.

Taylor-Brown continued to control the racing from the front, taking a risk-free approach such as using the steps to descend to the lake rather than dicing with a possible slip on the grass banking. Spivey and Coldwell looked set for a duel for second, with a pack of 10 a further 30 seconds in arrears.

It was a little more than a lap of honour for Taylor-Brown on the final run, but behind her Spivey and Coldwell were locked together in the chase for second.

Taylor-Brown crossed the line with time to take the Union flag, bow and give a kiss to the heavens in honour of the Queen’s passing, with Coldwell managing to edge ahead of Spivey in a tense sprint finish.

Taylor-Brown said: “I didn’t feel that in control. My aim was to go really hard in the first tri and treat it like it was one race. That would hopefully split the race up – and it did. Then just stay focused. I know from last year in Jersey if you have a bit more time to go through transitions, less mistakes are made. It felt good, I knew I’d lose time on the swim, but I felt good on the bike today. The fact it was wet yesterday and we got to practice meant I knew exactly the lines I wanted to take into the corner and the speeds, so I felt fine.

Coldwell said: “I finally got on the podium! It was just one of those days where I had to keep chipping away. The group got smaller and smaller until it was just me and Taylor and we had a battle – a tough day. She’s a pocket rocket and ran so well in London. I thought ‘just go out and see what happened’, one lap down I was still with her so just gave it a go.”

Spivey said: “I’ve been struggling a bit this week and wasn’t sure how I was going to pull up in this race so I was happy just to come away with a podium. I always seem to be battling it out with Sophie and it’s fun to race her. I knew she had a pretty strong sprint in her and she got me in the end. The course is really stop and go and the wet conditions added a whole other element. I think it favoured technically savvy riders and I tried to be smart, but with all the water coming in your face and so much to think about it was hard to get a good flow going.”

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