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Russell White finishes 48th as Blummenfelt wins men's triathlon

The men’s triathlon got off to a bizarre start when a portion of the contestants were unable to enter the body of water due to a motor boat in their way.

Image: Morgan Treacy/INPHO

TEAM IRELAND’S RUSSELL White finished 48th in the triathlon final, 9 minutes and 36 seconds down on Norway’s Kristian Blummenfelt who took first place.

Alex Yee continued Britain’s run of success in the triathlon with a silver medal on his debut while New Zealander Hayden Wilde won bronze.

White got the last qualifying spot for Tokyo after an exceptionally tough year as he broke his collarbone in early 2020. He started his run in 47th and in a chase pack 2:20 off the leaders.

“I just got off to a bad start in the swim. It put me on the back foot from the start. Just not enough guys to work with on the bike. I struggled all day long,” he told RTE post-race. 

There were farcical scenes at the start when half the field dived in to begin the race while the other half stayed on the pontoon, blocked from entering the water by a boat.

Organisers tried frantically to stop those in the water but they had swum around 150 metres before being intercepted by another boat and taken back to the pontoon.

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For Blummenfelt, a late surge proved enough to hold off the 23-year old Kent athlete. He was visibly in pain down the final stretch but held on to secure Norway’s first medal in Tokyo. 

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Maurice Brosnan

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