Unprecedented Line-up of Olympic Stars Headline Elite Field

05 March, 2024

Unprecedented Line-up of Olympic Stars Headline Elite Field

Anticipation is reaching fever pitch as the global World Triathlon Championship Series returns to Abu Dhabi on 8-9 March, 2024, at Yas Marina Circuit. The capital is set to witness a spectacular showcase of athleticism, with an unparalleled line-up of elite athletes vying for qualifying points for the 2024 Olympic and Paralympic Games in Paris.

Elite Athlete Field: A Gathering of Triathlon Royalty

The World Triathlon Championship Series Abu Dhabi powered by TAQA has curated one of the most formidable fields ever seen in the capital, bringing together a powerhouse of talent that includes the complete 2020 men's Olympic podium - Kristian Blummenfelt (Norway), Alex Yee (Great Britain), and Hayden Wilde (New Zealand). The intensity amplifies with the presence of the 2022 and 2023 world champions, Leo Bergere and Dorian Coninx, both representing France, who will also be aiming for a podium spot. In total, 55 of the world’s best elite male athletes will be racing, representing 22 different nations.

Defending Abu Dhabi champion and Olympic silver medallist, Alex Yee said: “I am really looking forward to start my season in Abu Dhabi. I was pleased with how I raced last year after a good camp on the Gold Coast and I'm hoping for the same having been in Australia for the last five weeks. It will be good to see where my fitness is, as I build to Paris in July and Abu Dhabi will play a big part in helping prepare myself for it!”

The women's elite field is equally impressive, led by defending Abu Dhabi champion and reigning World Champion Beth Potter (Great Britain). Joining her are Olympic superstars Gwen Jorgensen from the USA, the 2016 Olympic Champion making a long-anticipated return to the sport following her 2016 Olympic victory; and 2020 silver medallist Georgia Taylor-Brown from Great Britain. Ironman 70.3 World Champion Taylor Knibb (USA) will also be a formidable athlete in the 55-strong field. This star-studded cast, representing 25 countries, promises a spectacle of athleticism, strategy, and sheer determination on the world-famous Yas Marina Circuit.

“2023 was an incredible season for me - starting with my first ever WTCS win in Abu Dhabi and ending as World Champion! It’s the kind of season dreams are made of. Obviously the race this weekend is so important for every athlete lining up in Abu Dhabi as we look towards the Olympic Games this summer. I'm excited to test my legs and hopefully have another get race in Abu Dhabi!” commented defending champion and reigning World Champion, Beth Potter.

Mixed Team Relay: Unrivalled International Competition

The Mixed Team Relay, a highlight of the two-day event, promises another spectacle with more teams than ever before lining up. 15 countries will compete in the unique three-athlete format including reigning Olympic champions Team GB, who will be aiming for a strong start to their 2024 season. They will face fierce competition from Olympic silver and bronze medallists, Team USA and France, respectively.

Para World Cup: All eyes on Paralympic hopefuls

A packed calendar of para-triathlon racing at the world level will also get underway in Abu Dhabi, with the first World Para Cup of the season taking place on Friday, 8 March. With all eyes on the Paralympic Games in Paris later this year, there will be plenty of medal-hopefuls to track at Yas Marina Circuit.

Look out for Florian Brungraber H2 (AUT, PTWC), who will be keen to match his victory from last year’s event as he attempts to set an early marker ahead of the Paralympics in September. Eva María Moral Pedrero H1 (ESP, PTWC) will be another defending gold medallist from the 2023 World Cup in Abu Dhabi to keep tabs on.

Community Engagement: A Triathlon Celebration for All

In addition to the elite races, the World Triathlon Championship Series Abu Dhabi emphasises community engagement by hosting 15 age group triathlon, running and cycling races open to athletes of all ages and abilities.

His Excellency Talal Al Hashemi, Executive Director of the Events Sector at Abu Dhabi Sports Council – organisers of the event – commented, "We are once again thrilled to welcome a remarkable assembly of triathletes from all over the world to Abu Dhabi. The level of talent participating is a testament to Abu Dhabi's standing on the world stage as a premier destination for top-tier competitions.

“The presence of these triathlon titans offers a unique chance for our local athletes to rub shoulders with and be inspired by the very best in the sport – especially exciting this year, as they will be chasing Olympic and Paralympic qualifying points here in the capital. I for one am excited to witness the dedication, skill, and passion that define these athletes, and hope to see the rest of the community in the grandstands at Yas Marina Circuit cheering on their own countries on 8-9 March!”

Registrations for the age group and community races are now open, and athletes and enthusiasts eager to be part of the action can sign up via the event website at abudhabi.triathlon.org. Entries start from just AED 40.