From Press Release — EDMONTON, Alberta — Under-23 competitor Erin Jones picked up her first world championships medal on Sunday in Hawrelak Park, while Olympian Jarrod Shoemaker returned to form with a seventh-place finish in the elite men’s ITU World Triathlon Series Grand Final race.
Jones (Colorado Springs, Colo.) logged a time of 2 hours, 6 minutes, 59 seconds to claim the bronze medal. Competing on a 1,500-meter swim, 43.2-kilometer bike, 10-kilometer run course, Germany’s Sophia Saller was crowned champion in 2:04:52, followed by Australian Gillian Backhouse in 2:05:25. Jones was trailing the lead bike pack of seven by more than a minute but ran her way back into medal contention. It is the first women’s U23 medal since Jasmine Oeinck took silver in 2008.
“It was amazing, I felt great,” said Jones, who is a recent graduate and member of the Elite Triathlon Academy. “Our team did awesome yesterday and it was a huge motivation for us to go hard today. Watching Gwen [Jorgensen] run the way that she did yesterday gave me motivation that if I’m in the chase pack I can run my way up, too. I just tried really hard, and I did.”
Newcomer Kirsten Kasper (Marietta, Ga.) also ran from the chase pack into the top five, finishing fourth in 2:07:33 just weeks after earning her elite license. Johanna Gartman (Colorado Springs, Colo.), also a member of the Elite Triathlon Academy, finished 10th in 2:09:02.
In the elite men’s ITU World Triathlon Series Grand Final, Jarrod Shoemaker (Clermont, Fla.) earned his best finish ever in a WTS Grand Final, crossing the line in seventh with a time of 1:49:50. It was Shoemaker’s first top-10 finish in a WTS race since 2010, and with the points earned today, Shoemaker finishes the season as the top American in the WTS rankings in 22nd. Joe Maloy (Wildwood Crest, Mo.) finished 17th in 1:50:43 for his best career Grand Final finish and ends the season as the No. 2 American in 24th overall.
“This is what we’ve been going for all year long – my goal was top 15,” Shoemaker said. “Now we’re looking at Rio. Last year I tried something different and kind of burned myself out at the end of the year. The beginning of this year was more about getting love for the sport back and having fun. It’s been a good year.”
Great Britain’s Alistair Brownlee surged ahead of the field on the bike to gain the advantage he needed to win the race, clocking in at 1:48:44. Spain finished 2-3, with Mario Mola in second at 1:49:04 and Javier Gomez not far behind in 1:49:07. The finish position was just what Gomez needed to capture his fourth ITU World Championship title with 4,860 points. Mola finished the season second overall with 4,601 points and Jonathan Brownlee of Great Britain was third overall with 4,501 points. Visit triathlon.org for complete rankings.
One day of competition remains in Edmonton, with the age-group Standard (Olympic-Distance) World Championships and the new Junior/U23 Mixed Relay World Championships. For full coverage of all events, including elites, aquathlon, paratriathlon and juniors, visit usatriathlon.org.
ITU World Triathlon Grand Final Edmonton
1,500m swim, 43.2k bike, 10k run
1. Alistair Brownlee (GBR), 1:48:44
2. Mario Mola (ESP), 1:49:04
3. Javier Gomez (ESP), 1:49:07
7. Jarrod Shoemaker (Clermont, Fla.), 1:49:50
9. Joe Maloy (Wildwood Crest, N.J.), 1:50:43
ITU Under-23 World Championships
1,500m swim, 43.2k bike, 10k run
1. Sophia Saller (GER), 2:04:52
2. Gillian Backhouse (AUS), 2:05:25
3. Erin Jones (Colorado Springs, Colo.), 2:06:59
4. Kirsten Kasper (Marietta, Ga.), 2:07:33
10. Johanna Gartman (Colorado Springs, Colo.), 2:09:02