The Crank on the Mixed Team Relay, Racine and Lance Armstrong

The Crank liked what he saw from the Aussie mixed relay team, was impressed by the Racine results and finds Lance Armstrong to have some interesting insight.

| July 19, 2017 | NEWS

Charlotte McShane, Ashleigh Gentle and Matt Hauser get ready to greet teammate Jacob Birtwhistle at the line at the Hamburg ITU World Triathlon Mixed Relay World Championship.

Charlotte McShane, Ashleigh Gentle and Matt Hauser get ready to greet teammate Jacob Birtwhistle at the line at the Hamburg ITU World Triathlon Mixed Relay World Championship.

Photo >Frank Wechsel / spomedis

So first off I have to ask about the mixed relay championships. Now it's fair comment to say that at the elite level the cupboard has been fairly bare for a while But the team of Birtwhistle, McShane, Hauser and Gentle righted that ship on the weekend with their win. And, yep, you can say what you like about this format, but there is some appeal to this. Birtwhistle will win a regular world title in the next few seasons - he’s that good. The excitement generated by watching a single day world title event should translate to the regular season instead of this "Grand Final" accumulation format which is paint-dry exciting. Well done to this team for putting it all together on a one-shot effort and getting this done.

The window of opportunity for a big world championship tip is open for Sam Appleton right now. He has all the tools to get it done on the big stage as exemplified in this weekend’s win at 70.3 Racine. Appleton’s win led a trifecta of Aussie "winningness" in Racine with Tim Reed and Joe Gambles getting it done, too.

Nice to see a men’s top six at a race that you think are sizeable names. Well done to Racine for getting them there.

Holly Lawrence monsters the bike. She is going to be almost impossible to beat at the 70.3 worlds this season. Another win (Racine) was set up via a big pedal.

Lucy Gossage and Cyril Viennot went big at IM UK and took it out. Will Clarke’s 2:46 marathon was the day’s quickest. The event kinda slips by though.

Superleague has announced the next edition of their race series. This time with a women’s set up included. Not sure how they are going to make a great TV package with all this packed in though. And, while I support the inclusion of a women’s race, this is going to compound their broadcast retention and numbers.

During the tour de France this season I have been catching the Stages podcast which is hosted by Lance Armstrong. Now say what you like about the guy and is past, his insight into the tour is pretty good. (Even though he still hasn’t learned Aussie Tour commentator and former firstoffthebiker Matt Keenan’s name!) Anyway his comments on triathlon were interesting in that he did comment that no one goes to a race to watch the pros. And this is spot on. People consume the pro race via circumstance rather than via an all out effort to go and watch the pros. if you are there watching you are generally supporting mate or family member and you simply cast any eye over the pro race. Haven’t seen any Frodeno flags at any event I have been to.