Races › Championship › Munich
11 Sep 2021
2 min read
Athletes ○ Championship ○ Munich
Steps or grass? It’s the talk of the athletes ahead of Super League Triathlon Munich as a truly unique course starts to bear its teeth before racing has even begun.
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Among the incredible features of Super League’s first visit to Germany at the historic Olympiapark, which includes a remarkable bike course with cobbles, dead turns, sharp climbs and fast descents, is the entrance and exit to the lake swim.
With the Equalizer format in play the athletes race an ITT on the bike to decide a pursuit start for two continuous stages of swim-bike-run.
The pursuit start begins in transition – which is at the top of a steep hill that leads to the water. Athletes will have to tackle it four times in total – twice going down to the lake and twice heading back to transition.
There’s a clear choice for the athletes. They can either stick to one side and go it on the grass. On the other there are 35 steps broken by a few flats to make the climb.
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The athletes were busy trying to figure out the best tactics at course familiarisation with an increasing amount of water set to make the grass increasingly treacherous as the athletes exit.
Vasco Vilaca was one of those trying each and every possibility multiple times.
He said: “I think I’m going to go down on the grass because going down the stairs is a bit slower and if you fall you can hurt yourself but the grass is easier for your body to take. Going up if I’m alone I will take the stairs because it’s much faster as you can push yourself up. If there is a group of many people I may take the grass as I don’t want to be in a queue to get back up.”
Maya Kingma and Sophie Coldwell were in close conversation with their SLT Cheetahs Team Manager, Annie Emmerson, about the best tactics.
“Back up I think the grass will be faster. If it’s going to be wet then maybe the steps,” said Kingma.
Coldwell added: “Grass is quicker but more slippy. On the way back up you get more traction with the steps.”
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