London: The Professional Triathletes Organisation (PTO) has announced its four wildcards for the PTO European Open men’s and women’s races in Ibiza on 6 May, setting up some tantalising head-to-head encounters.
For the men’s race, the widely acknowledged G.O.A.T. of Triathlon Jan Frodeno (GER) is confirmed alongside double Olympic champion Alistair Brownlee (GBR), meaning the race in Ibiza will feature all three of the Olympic gold medallists in the sport since 2008, following the confirmation yesterday that Tokyo winner and PTO World #1, Kristian Blummenfelt, will be leading the race line-up. This will be the first time the three athletes have competed in the same race.
Talking on social media today, Frodeno said he had “goosebumps” at the prospect of this much anticipated duel in the Ibiza sun.
Also included in the men’s race are pro cyclist-turned-triathlete Cameron Wurf (AUS), who was competing for the Ineos Grenadiers in this month’s iconic Paris-Roubaix, and Justus Nieschlag (GER), who impressively won Ironman 70.3 Lanzarote in March.
For the women’s race, the four wildcards have gone to: Amelia Watkinson (NZL), who has put together an impressive bank of results over the last two seasons in which she’s been on the podium in every event she’s raced; 21-year-old Sif Madsen (DEN), who was second at this year’s CLASH Miami with a 75 score; PTO World #39 Anne Reischmann (GER); and Els Visser (NED), who has had a strong start to her season in the southern hemisphere by winning Ironman New Zealand and coming second at the Challenge Wanaka Half.
Commenting on the wildcards, PTO CEO Sam Renouf said:
“The purpose of wildcard selections is to ensure we get the highest quality race fields and that athletes of proven stature and standing in our sport, who may have missed out in the rankings due to injury or absence, get the opportunity to compete. As well as give opportunities to newcomers, who have shown exciting potential but have not yet done enough to make it through the rankings.”
“There have been a lot of column inches and social posts about Jan’s return to racing this year and this match up with Kristian and Alistair, so it’s great to finally confirm it and be able to look forward to what we all hope will be fantastic day of racing in the inaugural PTO European Open.”
The PTO European Open will feature a women’s and men’s 100km race (2km swim; 80km bike; 18km run) in Ibiza Town, set against the island’s idyllic Balearic backdrop and co-hosted alongside the 2023 World Triathlon Multisport Championships. The two PTO races take place on Saturday 6 May, with the men starting at 0815 CET and the women at 0945 CET. Both will be broadcast live around the world to 170+ territories, courtesy of the PTO Tour’s partnerships with Warner Bros. Discovery (you can watch the action live on Eurosport 2 from 0800 CET) as well as a range of other international, regional and local broadcasters including DAZN, beIN Sports and SPOTV.
The 2023 PTO European Open automatically qualified women’s and men’s start lists were announced earlier this week.
The 2023 PTO Tour starts in Ibiza on 6 May before going to Milwaukee on 4-5 August for the PTO US Open and then to Singapore for the first-ever PTO Asian Open on 19-20 August.
For Further Information
Professional Triathletes Organisation
Anthony Scammell E: [email protected]
About the Professional Triathletes Organisation
The PTO is a new body, co-owned by the professional athletes, seeking to elevate and grow the sport of Triathlon and take it to the next level. Each PTO Open is raced over 100km (2km swim, 80km bike and 18km run). 2023 PTO Tour races announced include: the PTO European Open in Ibiza on 6 May, the PTO US Open in Milwaukee on 4-5 August and the PTO Asian Open in Singapore on 19-20 August. The season will be underpinned by the PTO World Rankings, helping to create a compelling season-long narrative in the sport for the first time.