Top three men at Tokyo Olympics to headline World Triathlon Finals in Abu Dhabi

Joining them are 2020 Games women’s gold and silver medal winners Flora Duffy and Georgia Taylor-Brown

Alex Yee of Great Britain, Kristian Blummenfelt of Norway and Hayden Wilde of New Zealand compete in the men's individual triathlon at the 2020 Tokyo Olympics in July, 2021. AP
Beta V.1.0 - Powered by automated translation

The 2020 Tokyo Olympics men's gold, silver and bronze medallists are set to headline the World Triathlon Championship Finals on Yas Island in Abu Dhabi on November 23-26.

Norway's Kristian Blummenfelt, Briton Alex Yee and New Zealander Hayden Wilde will all take part in the event in the UAE next month.

Joining the trio are the Olympic women’s gold and silver medallists Flora Duffy, of Bermuda, and Briton Georgia Taylor-Brown.

Blummenfelt, 28, made sporting history by becoming the first male triathlete to win the Olympic and World titles in the same year.

A powerful biker, his relentless running surges steered him to his most successful season in 2021, starting with a brilliant win at WTCS Yokohama and ending in Championship Finals glory in Edmonton – with gold in Tokyo in between.

Yee, 24, silver medallist behind Blummenfelt and winner of gold in the Mixed Relay in Tokyo, arrives in good form having added the triathlon title at the Commonwealth Games in Birmingham in the summer.

Wilde, 25, won three stages of the World Triathlon Championship Series and arrives as the World No 1.

He has skipped the World Triathlon Series Cagliari and Bermuda races and instead will arrive in Abu Dhabi three weeks early to put in a solid training block and adapt to the weather in the capital.

“The last few years have been incredible and winning an Olympic medal is a unique feeling few have the privilege of experiencing,” Wilde said in a statement.

“Behind this achievement was a long journey, and countless hours of training but any lover of this sport will understand that triathlon is well worth it.

Flora Duffy of Bermuda celebrates winning the gold medal in the Women's Individual Triathlon at the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games in July 2021. Getty

“This year I took home silver at the 2022 Commonwealth Games, so what better way to end the year being crowned World Champ in Abu Dhabi?

“The competition is going to be fierce – especially from Alex. We’ve enjoyed some great battles on the racecourse so I can’t wait to go head-to-head again!

“I’ve chosen to prepare for the World Championships by coming to Abu Dhabi for a month prior to the race – I’ve heard that the training facilities are amazing, so I’m hoping it’ll be the perfect lead-up for me to take home a world title.”

Duffy, who created history by becoming the first Bermudian Olympic gold medallist, insisted she is motivated and excited by the potential battle for the world title in Abu Dhabi.

“For that kind of Grand Final to materialise, I first need a good score in Bermuda,” she said.

“Georgia more than deserves her top spot, and I’m the underdog at this point hoping to make it exciting.

“This season has been a strange and long one with many ups and downs – post Olympics and some Covid challenges, some injury and middle-distance goals.

“I have fond memories from last year in Abu Dhabi, which I can draw on, and expect the atmosphere to be even bigger this year with more triathletes competing over the weekend.”

Also confirmed for the event is American Allysa Seely, a paratriathlon gold medallist at the 2016 and 2020 Paralympics Games.

Updated: October 25, 2022, 1:44 PM