Teenage Stars, Dominations And Mind Blowing Swim Times: 5 Things We Learned From Arena Games Triathlon Switzerland

Arena Games Triathlon, Suseee, Switzerland 2023,

The Arena Games Triathlon powered by Zwift 2023 World Championship Series delivered some incredible racing on its first visit to Switzerland and set up a fantastic final.

From teenage prodigies exploding onto the scene to established stars getting proving their talents, there was a lot to take in.

Here we take a look at five things we learned from Arena Games Triathlon powered by Zwift Switzerland:

If you’re good enough, your’e old enough

Having a 15-year-old racing Arena Games Triathlon felt like an interesting novelty before the race, a glimpse at a potential star of the future and proof that this format is helping to develop a new generation of talent that struggles to get this exposure elsewhere.

But it turned out to deliver a star of the present.

Arena Games Triathlon, Suseee, Switzerland 2023,

Fanni Szalai, who only turned 15 in January, put in a quite remarkable display.

It was one thing to make it through her heat, but to then deliver in the final and finish on the podium was beyond a shock.

She now has the opportunity to try and mix it with the best again in London and compete for the World Championship Series title. What an incredible story.

Short course speed

It was the first Arena Games Triathlon event to take place in a 25m pool – and the times were fast.

In the heats we saw the first sub 2 minute 200m recorded in the format. In fact, two athletes managed it with Maciej Brudziak and Fabian Meeusen both posting 1:58 in the heats.

Arena Games Triathlon, Suseee, Switzerland 2023,

The average swim time for the first heat was 2:03. In context, the average swim time for the men in the first event of the Series in Montreal was 2:15 in a 50m pool.

Zsanett Dominates

Zsanett Bragmayer had already proved herself a force to be reckoned with in Arena Games Triathlon Singapore 2022 when she took out the win against a stacked field.

That event very much played to her strengths with an open water swim.

Arena Games Triathlon, Suseee, Switzerland 2023,

In Switzerland she was back and trying her hand in the pool, where she admits she is not quite as comfortable.

She really need not have worried.

Bragmayer’s win was utterly dominant and was pretty much secured by the end of Stage 2.

Now she will go head-to-head with Gina Sereno in London, with the American having won in similar fashion in Montreal. It will be a fascinating contest.

Henri v Chase

Henri Schoeman’s return took another big forward step as he went from second in Montreal to first in Switzerland.

Arena Games Triathlon Montreal 2023 Mens Fiinal
Arena Games Triathlon Montreal Canada 2023 Mens Final on 25th February 2023 at Centre Sportif Du Parc Olympique

The only man to have beaten him in Arena Games this year is Chase McQueen, and now the two will come head-to-head one more time in London as the strong favourites for the World Championship.

It’s a hard one to call, but the stakes are very high.

Swiss cheers

A first trip to Switzerland and a new venue in the CAMPUS Sursee Sportarena delivered another unique Arena Games experience.

Arena Games Triathlon, Suseee, Switzerland 2023,

With big Olympic venues in the shape of Montreal and London at the beginning and end of the 2023 series, a smaller and more intimate arena in the middle produced a fascinating contrast.

With tickets sold-out, there was an electric atmosphere in the arena, with the fans so close to the athletes and plenty of home favourites to cheer on as well.

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