Jonathan Brownlee is back in ITU World Triathlon Series action this Sunday along with Gordon Benson and Grant Sheldon in Montreal, Canada.
Brownlee finished fourth over the sprint distance last weekend in Edmonton on his return from illness. He hopes that race will have increased his fitness going into the standard distance event in the heart of Montreal’s old town.
He said: “Last weekend I was a bit disappointed. I was pleased to be back on the start line, but I don’t come to races to come fourth. I like to at least be on the podium. I came out of the race wanting more this week in Montreal.”
Brownlee flew home from Hamburg on doctor’s orders last month having only had one competitive race so far this year when he finished second to Alistair in Leeds.
He added: “I’ve lacked race fitness and race sharpness. You can’t train it, you need to be in a race. Hopefully having a sprint distance race under my belt will have moved my fitness on a little bit and I will have recovered well. It’s unusual having two races in a row, so hopefully I will have recovered well.”
His ITU world title aspirations were ruined by not racing in Hamburg as he won’t now be able to complete enough races ahead of the Grand Final in Rotterdam. However, he hopes to be competitive in Montreal, Stockholm and Rotterdam as well as the British Triathlon Mixed Relay Cup in Nottingham on 2 September and Super League in Jersey.
He said: “I want to do well in every race. I want to enjoy racing and do as best as I can.”
Grant Sheldon finished tenth last weekend in Edmonton; a really strong result after a nasty shoulder injury before the Leeds race. He was competitive throughout the sprint in Edmonton and should start confidently in Montreal.
Gordon Benson is the only other British competitor. He finished 24th last weekend, and the longer and more challenging course in Montreal may suit him better. The swim features some long straights, which will play to the advantage of the stronger swimmers and the bike course has some hills, which again should suit the British athletes.
The women’s race is on Saturday and could see another runaway win by Flora Duffy of Bermuda. The defending ITU world champion has looked imperious winning her last four races in a row. No British women are racing, but there will be a large contingent in Stockholm, including Non Stanford and Jodie Stimpson returning from injuries.