Hayden Wilde ready to send it in World Cup season opener in New Zealand

By | 22 Feb, 2024

A new World Triathlon Cup season begins with the 2024 World Triathlon Cup Napier, a coastal city of New Zealand’s North Island. While New Zealand is well known for staging triathlon races, this will be the inaugural World Triathlon Cup for Napier. The race schedule is stacked across Saturday 24th and Sunday 25 February.

Saturday will host the 2024 Oceania Triathlon Junior Championships Napier and the 2024 World Triathlon Cup Napier with the world’s best athletes racing in an all-important Olympic qualification window for Paris 2024. Sunday will stage the Age-Group races, Oceania Junior Mixed Relay and the 2024 World Triathlon Mixed Relay.

The 2024 World Triathlon Cup is a sprint-distance triathlon (750m swim, 20km cycle and 5km run) and will start along the iconic stretch of the waterfront in Napier called Perfume Point. The 2024 event will be integrated into a Triathlon Festival featuring the New Zealand Sprint Distance Championships. It’s time for athletes to test out how the pre-season build has gone and show off form, as the world’s best fire up to battle it out in a sprint-distance format, the first World Cup race of 2024. The Elite women will race on Saturday from 4pm local time and the men will line-up from 6pm, all watchable on the platform (live and on-demand).

The Wilde favourite
New Zealand’s Olympic bronze medallist and ranked number two in the world Hayden Wilde will take centre stage and wear number one in Saturday’s World Cup season opener in Napier, New Zealand. Wilde is a firm favourite to not only claim victory in the first World Cup of the season but to qualify in 2024 to represent New Zealand in the next Olympic Games in Paris. Having spent the last weeks training at home in New Zealand and is looking forward to kick-off the season with a great result, before heading to the Middle East and then Europe to continue preparations for the Olympics.

Young guns ready to fire
Wilde will be joined by Portugal’s Ricardo Batista, a sprint-distance specialist and known for his gutsy performances right to the end. In the 2023 World Triathlon Cup in New Zealand, staged in New Plymouth, silver and bronze medals came down to the wire in one of the most thrilling sprint finished between Batista and New Zealand’s Tayler Reid, where the Portuguese athlete had to settle for third place. Batista earned the silver medal in the 2023 World Triathlon Cup Tongyeong at the end of last season followed by 5th place in the World Cup in Miyazaki, after serving a penalty. The Portuguese athlete will be highly motivated to sprint for a medal in Napier this weekend. Reid will also prove fierce competition come Saturday’s sprint-distance World Cup.

New Zealand’s rising star Dylan McCullough, winner of the 2018 Buenos Aires Youth Games, who earned his first World Cup medal in 2023 in the World Triathlon Cup Miyazaki, showed off fantastic form last weekend claiming the silver in the 2024 Oceania Triathlon Cup in Wanaka. McCullough is eager to line up in Napier and produce a result which will assist his Olympic campaign to Paris in 2024.

Olympic dreams on the line
Hungary’s Olympian Gabor Faldum is an experienced triathlete who is motivated towards representing at another Olympic Games this summer. Faldum secured a top 10 finish in the 2023 World Triathlon Cup in Chengdu, proving his strength up against some of the world’s best rising stars of the sport.

Australia’s Commonwealth Games representative Luke Willian and rising star Brandon Copeland will be eager to test early season form in Napier on Saturday. Both men have stated their intent to qualify and represent Australia in the next Olympic Games in Australia. Napier provides a strong opportunity to earn valuable Olympic points. Willian crossed the line in 7th place in the 2023 World Triathlon Cup Chengdu and Copeland was 9th in the 2023 World Triathlon Cup in Tongyeong and 6th place in the World Cup in Miyazaki to close the season.

The British troops ready for a showdown
A strong contingent of British talent will start the World Cup season in Napier, featuring Daniel Dixon, Samuel Dickinson, Hugo Milner and Ben Dijkstra. Milner showed incredible talent at the end of 2023 when he showcased the best race of his career resulting in victory in the 2023 World Triathlon Cup Miyazaki.

One to watch
Spain’s Genis Grau could also be among the contenders to watch on Saturday. Grau brought home his first World Cup gold medal in the 2022 World Triathlon Cup Huatulco and 4th place in the 2023 World Cup in Mexico, both in sprint-distance race formats. Norway’s Casper Stornes, a star on both the World Triathlon Championship Series and World Cup circuits, is among the men who will be hunting for valuable Olympic points and a World Cup podium come Saturday.

Review the start list: 2024 World Triathlon Cup Napier - Elite Men and follow the action live and on-demand over on on Saturday 24th February with the men lining up at 6pm local time.

Related Event: 2024 World Triathlon Cup Napier
24 Feb, 2024 • event pageall results
Results: Elite Men
1. Callum McClusky AUS 00:49:41
2. Hayden Wilde NZL 00:49:47
3. Alberto Gonzalez Garcia ESP 00:49:49
4. Shachar Sagiv ISR 00:49:50
5. Dylan McCullough NZL 00:49:52
6. Alessio Crociani ITA 00:49:58
7. Samuel Dickinson GBR 00:50:00
8. Brandon Copeland AUS 00:50:05
9. Nicola Azzano ITA 00:50:06
10. Tjebbe Kaindl AUT 00:50:08
Results: Elite Women
1. Sophie Linn AUS 00:56:35
2. Sophie Alden GBR 00:56:43
3. Olivia Mathias GBR 00:56:44
4. Melanie Santos POR 00:57:04
5. Zsanett Kuttor-Bragmayer HUN 00:57:14
6. Ilaria Zane ITA 00:57:25
7. Gina Sereno USA 00:57:28
8. Ainsley Thorpe NZL 00:57:31
9. Olivia Thornbury NZL 00:57:32
10. Jolanda Annen SUI 00:57:35