American triathlon dominance. Pearson and Jorgensen dominated the World Cup in Karlovy Vary

American triathlon dominance. Pearson and Jorgensen dominated the World Cup in Karlovy Vary

These American triathletes confirmed their role as leaders and elite and won their respective categories at the Karlovy Vary Triathlon World Cup on Sunday, September 10. Gwen Jorgensen, 2016 Rio Olympic champion, was the best female triathlete, while Morgan Pearson, silver medalist of the World Championship final, won the men’s race. The best Czechs were Petra Kuříková ranked 14th and Jan Volár ranked 28th, who were powered and cheered to the finish line by fantastic fans.

Tens of thousands of spectators were watching the drama until the last metres of the women´s race at the Olympic Triathlon World Cup, which was hosted by the UNESCO spa town of Karlovy Vary for the seventh time in a row this year. In a roaring atmosphere, the triathlon battle between Rio Olympic champion Gwen Jorgensen and the Dutch triathlete Rachel Klamer was decided only a couple of meters before the finish line. In the end, the American, who returned to triathlon this year after a maternity break, was faster. “People were everywhere, they created a fantastic atmosphere along the whole course, so I enjoyed today’s race immensely,” smiled Jorgensen, whose collection also includes two world champion titles.

Two Czech triathletes also stood on the start line in Karlovy Vary. Petra Kuříková, however, was very unlucky during the 1500m swim. „Immediately after the start, she got smacked and my googles were broken.  Without them, I was fumbling around in the water and bumping into other competitors, for which I got a 15-second penalty,” described Kuříková, who came out of the water in 27th place, which then put her in the third group on the bike.

Kuříková moved quickly forward in the 10km run. From 24th place she got to the edge of the top ten, where she was then pushed back by a 15-second penalty. Because of that, she finished 14th. “I am very disappointed. I should have swum in the first group and then it would have been a completely different race,” she said.

Zimovjanova’s run was affected by a recent leg injury that caused her to fall through the results list. She finished 24th on the blue carpet in front of a packed grandstand at Theatre Square in Karlovy Vary. “It’s my best finish of the season, so I can’t be unhappy about the result,” said Zimovjanova, who has been plagued by health problems all year.

Six Czech triathletes

In the men’s race, after the swimming section, a group of seven men formed the lead, from which Morgan Pearson managed to build his lead to the final run. “I have already secured my place at the Paris Olympics so I wanted to try a different race tactic. The cycling part here with the tough hills is really tough, but I felt great so I attacked and succeeded. I started the run very fast which allowed me to really enjoy the last kilometre,” said Pearson.

Six Czech athletes entered the race. After the swim, David Martin was the best of the bunch, riding in the second cycling group in 8th to 15th place. Tomáš Zikmund was in the third group, Jan Volár in the fourth. Filip Michálek and Tomáš Kříž were at the end of the field. Filip Václavík gave up after the swim due to cramps.

The cycling track, one of the hardest in the world, then shuffled the field. A group of eleven triathletes formed in the lead. The top three Czechs then arrived at the second transition area in a second pack of 27 triathletes. Volár was the best of the bunch, finishing in 28th position. “Today was a terrible ordeal. The water was warm, so I boiled in my wetsuit right at the start and then I knew it was going to be bad. On the bike it was still okay, but on the run I was happy to finish. I felt terrible,” said Volar, who said before the race that if he doesn’t win he will move on to the long triathlon. “That’s where my training will be directed now,” he confirmed at the finish.

Tomáš Zikmund finished 30th, David Martin was 35th, Filip Michálek 38th and Tomáš Kříž 39th. Due to the combination of hot weather and the difficult course, a number of triathletes withdrew from the race.

The World Cup race concluded the busy programme of the CITY TRIATHLON Karlovy Vary, which started on Friday with the Czech Junior Cup. On Saturday morning the Geis Baby Duathlon for the youngest children took place. In the afternoon, there was the Age Groups race for the public, which was also the last part of this year’s Czech Cup.


Karlovy Vary Triathlon World Cup, 10th September 2023

Women: 1. Gwen Jorgensen (USA) 2:03:51, 2. Rachel Klamer (NED) 2:03:55, 3. Marlene Gomez-Göggel (GER.) 2:04:12 … 14. Petra Kuříková 2:07:26, 24. Tereza Zimovjanová 2:09:24

Men: 1. Morgan Pearson (USA) 1:51:56, 2. Márk Dévay (HUN) 1:53:08, 3. Jonas Schomburg (GER) 1:53:11 … 28. Jan Volár 1:58:34, 30. Tomáš Zikmund 1:59:01, 35. David Martin 2:01:59, 38. Filip Michálek 2:04:43, 39. Tomáš Kříž 2:08:19, Filip Václavík DNF

Complete results can be found here.

Tlamka and Pozlerova were the fastest in the sold-out Age Groups race

Tlamka and Pozlerova were the fastest in the sold-out Age Groups race

Over 280 triathletes took part in the Age Groups race, which took place as part of the busy programme of the CITY TRIATHLON Karlovy Vary. The race was for points to the Czech Cup in short triathlon and also for Czech titles in the youth, junior and academic categories. Filip Tlamka and Edita Pozlerová flew the fastest through the beautiful course in the spa centre.

Already a few days before the race, the organizers had to close the registrations because all the places on the starting grid were sold out in advance for the first time in history. Over 280 competitors jumped into the water in the Rolava leisure areal in several starting waves.

Fantastic courses awaited all of them, which will also be used by the World Cup participants tomorrow. After a 700 metre swim in Rolava, they moved on to the spa centre for a 20km bike ride, where they rode the iconic climb up Castle Hill three times. The final 5km run then took them along the Goethe Trail to the beautifully restored Imperial Spa House.

The first starting wave belonged to women together with the junior and youth categories. The first to cross the finish line was junior Edita Pozlerová, who also had the fastest female time of the day – 1:10:07! “I was a little bit behind out of the water, but I’m glad I was able to finish on the bike, so we were in the lead group going about five or six,” she described the race. “But the hills surprised me! Last year I was still a pupil, so it was my first time on Zámecký vrch and I didn’t expect it to be so hard,” smiled the new national champion at the finish line, who decided her victory in the first of the two cross-country circuits. Kateřina Hadravová was the second to cross the finish line and thus secured the junior title.

Much attention was directed to Marcela Joglova, the marathon runner and Tokyo Olympics participant tried her first triathlon in years. And in the women’s race, she finished 4th.

Jakub Homola won the junior race and Matěj Procházka triumphed among the juniors. However, both competitors were surpassed by Filip Tlamka, who was the fastest man of the second starting wave – 1:00:28. “I saw that I kept the same distance on the bike, which I then managed to do in the run,” said Tlamka. “I’m glad that after the high mountain training camp in Livigno I confirmed that my preparation for the final race of the World Championships is going in the right direction.”

On Sunday, the CITY TRIATHLON Karlovy Vary programme will culminate with the World Cup race, which you can watch live on CT Sport and The women start at 10 a.m., the men at 3 p.m.

European Talents: young athletes from the Czech Republic and Europe competed in Vary

European Talents: young athletes from the Czech Republic and Europe competed in Vary

The race programme of the CITY TRIATHLON Karlovy Vary was opened on Friday, September 8th by the Czech Cup for pupils. As part of the premiere European Talents project, triathletes from abroad were also invited to the start. A total of 146 children took part. After the ceremony, the children could also enjoy an interesting workshop prepared by Vendula Frintová – Divoká, a two-time winner of the World Cup in Karlovy Vary.

The very first start of the packed race weekend belonged to the youngest pupils, who had to swim 100 metres, cycle 2.2 kilometres and run 1 km in the sunny Rolava leisure areal. The fastest in this category was Laura Strangmüller, who outperformed even the boys’ rivals. Albert Schmida was the fastest among them.

The Road2Kona club, of which Strangmüller is a member, also did well in the 10-11 years category, dominating both the boys’ and girls’ races. The winners were David Patak and Patricia Böse.

The older pupils raced longer distances – 0.3-7.2-2 km. Timm Šmehlík and Valerie Chalupníková scored the most points for the Czech Cup.

The largest number of competitors was registered in the 14-15 category, where the race was held at distances of 0.4-10.2-3 km. Among boys Ondřej Plic won the title, among girls Kristýna Křížová won the title.

Full results can be found here.

The World Triathlon Cup is coming up

The World Triathlon Cup is coming up

The International Film Festival is over, but the world stars will soon return to Karlovy Vary. In September, the spa centre will once again host the World Cup in Olympic triathlon, which was attended by Olympic champions and world champions in the past.

Only instead of the red carpets that Hollywood actors used to walk on, the blue ones characteristic for triathlon races will be rolled out on the weekend of September 8-10. It is not only this contrast that the organizers of the CITY TRIATHLON Karlovy Vary race point out in a funny video that was made during the International Film Festival and is now circulating on social networks.

Its filming was accompanied by puzzled looks, laughter and curiosity. The main character, played by professional hockey player František Mála, was dressed in probably the craziest outfit seen during this year’s festival – he walked on the red carpet in front of the Thermal Hotel in a triathlon uniform, which he wore to the Great Hall. For the evening party at International Film Festival, he wore a black wetsuit and a bright pink swimming cap.

“At times the filming had a Borat-like, somewhat absurd dimension, because nobody knew about it except a small crew and a few members of the festival management. Not even the cashiers, the audience in the hall or the guests at the parties. And the most surprising were probably the viewers in the Czech Television studio,” says with a smile Vladimír Malý, the director of the CITY TRIATHLON Karlovy Vary event, which, in addition to the prestigious World Cup, also includes races for the public and children.

Apart from his work with the Chomutov Pirates ice hockey team, Mála is also popular for another reason – he and his friend Daniel make funny videos on Instagram and TikTok. They already have tens of thousands of fans. “Can I take your picture? I’ll hang it up in the booth,” laughed Mala´s teammates who met him at the festival wearing a tight triathlon uniform.

The Karlovy Vary race attracted attention with its video last year, when it captured the attention of triathlon fans with a funny remake of the film Vrchní, prchni, in which the main role of the fleeing Dalibor Vrana was played by Red Bull Air Race pilot Petr Kopfstein. He then took part in the race himself.

This year, triathletes will be able to meet František Mála at the start. “We are in contact with, for example, marathoner Marcela Joglová, tennis player Barbora Strýcová, but also with the Czech Olympic Committee. But I cannot confirm any names yet,” Malý said.

Three days of racing

CITY TRIATHLON Karlovy Vary is one of the most prestigious sporting events in the Czech Republic. The sports programme starts on Friday with the pupil races, on Saturday the Geis Baby Duathlon for the youngest children and especially the Age Groups race, which is intended for the general public.

Recreational athletes can enjoy a 750-metre swim in the Rolava leisure complex, 20 km of cycling through the beautiful spa centre with the iconic climb to Zámecký vrch and finally a five-kilometre flat run around the renovated Imperial Spa House. The race centre and finish are situated on the beautiful Theatre Square.

On Sunday, the whole programme culminates with the Olympic distance World Cup race, featuring the best triathletes on the planet as well as elite Czech athletes. You will be able to watch it live on ČT Sport, but also from the grandstand directly on Divadelní náměstí, in front of which a large LED screen will be prepared.

Triathlete Zimovjanova won a great 10th place at the World Cup in Karlovy Vary 

Triathlete Zimovjanova won a great 10th place at the World Cup in Karlovy Vary 

Olympic stars dominated the Karlovy Vary spa centre, where the Olympic Triathlon World Cup race took place on Sunday 11 September. Hungary’s Csongor Lehmann and France’s Leonie Periault, bronze medallist at the Tokyo Olympics, were victorious. The best Czechs were Tereza Zimovjanova (10th) and Jan Volár (24th). 

The Karlovy Vary spa centre welcomed the prestigious World Cup race in Olympic triathlon for the sixth time. Thousands of fans who surrounded the course considered to be the most beautiful and the most difficult in the World Triathlon calendar, were driving forward not only the Czech representatives. “The fans were great and helped me a lot, especially on the hard climb,” said Jan Volár. “The whole race had an amazing atmosphere,” confirmed Leonie Periault. 

Zimovjanová in the TOP10 

After the 1500m swim, which took place in the Rolava Lake, the only Czech participant in the women’s race was only 41st. She lost one minute forty-five to the fastest swimmer. A group of five female triathletes, including Periault and World Championship race winner Summer Rappaport, entered the 40 km long cycling course first.  

Zimovjanova got into the third group, which she then managed to chase up the riders in front of her to form a large second group. “The beginning of the bike was very tough, but then it was a more relaxed pace and I could save a bit of energy for the run,” Zimovjanova described. Her group of 19 was unable to erase the gap to the leaading pack during the seven laps leading through the beautiful spa centre and entered the second transition area one minute down. 

With an excellent run, Zimovjanova then moved forward. On the ten-kilometre course leading around the Carlsbad colonnades she even attacked the eighth place! “The last of the four laps was very difficult, I was getting cramps and two rivals overtook me. But in the end I am satisfied because I had the top ten as my goal,” she smiled. “I also really enjoyed the race thanks to the great spectators, who are always amazing in Vary. The spectators were shouting, banging on the barriers, so much that you couldn’t hear anything over the noise,” she added.
French triathlete Leonie Periault took the victory, Italian Bianca Seregni took silver and American Summer Rappaport took bronze. 

“It was a wonderful race! Karlovy Vary has a beautiful course and the whole city is amazing. The course here is very difficult due to the seven challenging climbs, but that’s exactly what suits me,” Periault smiled. 

Volár best among Czech triathletes 

A packed field of 70 competitors entered the men’s race, which also included four Czechs. Varga from Slovakia was the first to run out of the water of the Rolava Lake after the swimming section. David Martin was 27th, Jan Volár 31st, Tomas Zikmund 45th and Radim Grebik 59th.  

In the first laps of the cycling course, a group of 21 riders formed in the lead, which seemed to be at a close reach for Jan Volár. “I cycled the whole opening passage on the flat alone, but because of that I didn’t have enough strength left for the climb where we could catch them. I’m sorry because if I had got there, I would have fought for completely different positions in the rest of the race,” said Volár. 

He joined the second large group, which held positions 22nd to 45th. There he worked together with Martin and Grebik – they arrived at the second transition area with a loss of about 40 seconds. Tomáš Zikmund gradually dropped off during the bike section and rode with a big loss at the back of the field. He withdrew from the race before the run. 

Hungary’s Csongor Lehmann was the first to fire into the running section, and he stayed in the lead with American Matthew McElroy and Germany’s Lasse Lührs. It was only in the last hundred metres that the Hungarian triathlete decided his triumph. McElroy took the silver and the bronze went to the German triathlete. 

“I dreamed of this moment. I really like the Karlovy Vary course, that’s why I’ve been racing here for the third year in a row,” Lehmann smiled at the finish line. “We worked really hard on the bike to keep our lead over the second group. Then I knew that in the run it was going to be really hard against McElroy and Lührs because they are great runners. That’s why I thought I would try to start in the last hundred metres, which I did.” 

Volár entered the 10km race in great style as he was able to move quickly through the field ahead. “It wasn’t quite the same in the last lap, so I lost one position again, but I still feel that I couldn’t have done more in the run today,” said Volár, who was the best Czech triathlete for the second time in a row in Karlovy Vary. After last year’s 15th place, he is now 24th.  

Two other Czech athletes finished right behind him – Grebík crossed the finish line in front of a packed grandstand as 41st, David Martin was 42nd at the finish line on Theatre Square. 



Triathlon World Cup, Karlovy Vary, 11th September 

Men: 1. Csongor Lehmann (HUN) 1:51:10, 2. Matthew McElroy (USA) 1:51:20, 3. Lasse Lührs (GER.) 1:51:42 … 24. Jan Volár 1:54:18, 41. Radim Grebík 1:57:49, 42. David Martin 1:58:20 

Women: 1. Leonie Periault (FRA) 2:05:04, 2. Bianca Seregni (ITA.) 2:05:46, 3. Summer Rappaport (USA) 2:06:29 … 10. Tereza Zimovjanová 2:07:30 

Complete results here.