Vincent Luis wins ITU world title in Lausanne

Vincent Luis’ decision to miss the Tokyo test event to focus on the Grand final was vindicated today as he lifted the 2019 series’ winner’s trophy after a textbook race in the Swiss town of Lausanne. 

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It was Luis’ title to lose heading into the final round of the 2019 World Triathlon Series, after racking up five top-five finishes and one sixth in six races and needing a top-five finish in the final race. Contenders to his throne included the reigning champion Mario Mola, five-time world champion Javier Gomez, Fernando Alarza, Australia’s Jake Birtwhistle and Belgium’s Marten van Riel. And they, along with a punishing Swiss course, a gutsy Norwegian and temperatures in the high 20s, would make him work for it.

Knowing he was in a strong position, Luis played a relatively safe race. Mere seconds separated him and swim supremo Henri Schoeman after the two-lap 1.5km swim, guaranteeing him a place in the front pack alongside GB’s Jonny Brownlee, Gomez, Alarza and Birtwhistle. Mola had a sub-par swim to just miss the first pack, but by the start of the second lap of seven had brought the chase group up to make a large lead pack of 23.