Italy’s Bianca Seregni delivered an impressive performance in Weihai to secure World Cup gold, after a huge surge on the run! Austria’s Lisa Perterer returned to form and soared down the blue carpet, earning a deserving silver and Ilaria Zane of Italy was able to run away with in a ferocious battle for bronze.
Italy’s Bianca Seregni and Ilaria Zane led the field of 55 women onto Half Moon Bay for a beach start, in the 2023 World Triathlon Cup Weihai on Saturday morning, to contest in the Olympic-distance race, for valuable points and rankings.
The course featured a 2-lap 1.5km ocean, followed by an 8-lap bike course across the scenic 40km which included a technically challenging course with hilly sections and corners to navigate. Athletes then had a 4-lap 10km run to complete, before coming down the blue carpet to finish in front of the stunning coastal backdrop. The clear sky overlooked the bay in Weihai and race conditions were warm and humid for the start of the men’s competition.
Bianca Seregni, a fish in water across the 1.5km swim course
Seregni, renowned for her impressive swim stroke, led the entire 1.5km ocean swim, in the choppy conditions. The long trail of women behind her was having no success in catching the leader, who was carving through the water and extending her lead. On the final stretch of the swim, 6 women were chasing but the Italian exited the water first and still with a sizeable gap on the field.
The Italian continued to impress on the 40km bike
Seregni looked relaxed as she swiftly moved through transition and onto the bike course in Weihai. She appeared to look relaxed as she waited for the lead group, showing that she didn’t want to ride the challenging course solo, a tactical and smart move by the 2022 World Triathlon U23 Champion.
A main group of 18 women were leading and the rotation up front continued across the course of the 40km. The likes of Seregni, Austria’s Lisa Perterer, Turkey’s Sinem Francisca Tous Servera, Slovakia’s Romana Gajdošová and Spain’s Anna Godoy Contreras were doing a brilliant job to take turn in the driver’s seat.
Hungary’s Zsófia Kovács was forced to withdraw from the race due to illness however Hungary was still well represented by Márta Kropkó who was well-positioned on the course and sticking with the leading group.
Daniels continued to do a great job, trying to reel in the chase group however they were still losing time to the leading 18.
Austrian pair Perterer and Tanya Stroschneider were looking confident and enjoying the climbs and along with Seregni, were not letting the front of the pack out of their sight. Godoy Contreras staying right up there.
Positions 25-29 were 6-minutes off the pace by the final portion of the bike segment.
China’s Wen Wei led the main group through to the final lap on the bike and then it was Great Britain’s Hollie Elliot had a turn up the front, an impressive move by the British athlete who was making her World Cup debut in Weihai, to take the women into the final transition of the day.
Bianca Seregni, unstoppable across the 10km run
Zane, Godoy Contreras, Japan’s Niina Kishimoto were first on the run course but it was seconds before the Italian struck the pavement and peeled away entirely from the field of women
Seregni extended the gap as she stretched down the coastal road and kept grinding in the brutal conditions of the hot and incredibly humid day in Weihai.
Perterer was running brilliantly in second as she continued her stride and momentum across the course, looking in control of the silver medal.
The battle for bronze was taking place behind with Godoy Contreras, Zane and Kishimoto running shoulder-to-shoulder, all looking fiercely competitive as they motored across the coastal course together.
Bianca Seregni was a force to be reckoned with and was welcomed by huge crows in Weihai as she raced down the blue carpet, took the tape and was awarded World Cup gold. A dominating and impressive performance by the Italian athlete, as she continues her qualification pathway to the 2024 Olympic Games in Paris 2024.
Emotions were elevated as Austria’s Lisa Perterer crossed the line with silver in the women’s event after a turbulent year of injury. Today’s result proves that form is well and truly back on the line.
Italy was well represented on the women’s podium in Weihai as Ilaria Zane had the power to outrun the mighty sprint battle for bronze.
Related Event: 2023 World Triathlon Cup Weihai
|Results: Elite Men
|Lasse Nygaard Priester
|Jason Tai Long Ng
|Results: Elite Women
|Anna Godoy Contreras
|Sinem Francisca Tous Servera