By David Peddie on 16/09/11 at 6:47 am
Bled Junior European Cup - 17 September 2011
The penultimate Junior European Cup of 2011 takes us to Slovenia for a super sprint triathlon race.
Lake Bled offers athletes and spectators one of the most stunning locations on the ETU calendar.
It's been a long hard season for the junior athletes but many have made great strides in their development.
A lot of the names who have dominated this year's Junior series are missing from Bled, perhaps due to the ITU World Championship Series just last week in Beijing.
Nevertheless with such an open field, particularly in the Men’s event, Bled offers those competing a real chance to end the year on a high before the season's finale in Alanya.
Junior Men Preview
Of the 51 athletes registered on the start list only Belgian Christophe De Keyser can boast a podium finish in 2011. His third place came in Tabor in July.
De Keyser has finished 12th and 30th respectively in the past two years in Bled and will know the course well.
Junior Women Preview
Hungarian duo Eszter Pap and Renata Fuchs go into this race as favourites. Both have had a stellar year with consistent podium finishes on both the European and International circuit.
European Duathlon Champion Fuchs has finished in the top eight of every European Cup she has competed in this year, with third place at Holten her highest place.
Pap has had an equally successful year with four podiums in 2011 including victory in the Junior Cup at Vienna. She competed in Beijing last week, finishing 4th in the Grand Final but also picking up bronze in the Aquathlon Championship. It will be interesting to see how much her exploits in Beijing will take out of her.
Neither Pap nor Fuchs have raced in Bled before which perhaps offers a chance for one of the home athletes. Eva Troha could be the best chance for the home crowd following a competitive, if not spectacular 2011. She finished 7th last time out in Bled.
Grega Zore, Secretary General of the Slovenian Triathlon Federation says Bled has a proud history of triathlon. "The first triathlon race in Bled dates back in 1984 where 400 athletes competed in the first race," he said.
"In 2003, the current LOC Triathlon Club Trisport, organized triathlon in Bled again and from 2007 we have been proud to host the Junior European Cup races."
The LOC, Triathlon Club Trisport, was established in 1995. It is one of the biggest triathlon clubs in Slovenia with over a hundred members and the Nation's most prominent elite athlete Mateja Šimic, is a member.
2011 Balkan Championships - Mamaia, Romania - 17 September 2011
An inaugural event for 2011 is the Balkan Championships taking place in Mamaia, Romania.
This event is proof of the ETU's commitment to developing Triathlon across Europe and we are delighted to support the Romanian Triathlon Federation in their efforts to stage International class events.
In this festival of Triathlon there are Junior, Age Group, Youth and Elite categories covering the Super Sprint, Sprint and Olympic distances.
The Elite race is the standard Olympic distance, although no ranking points are available.
Full results will appear on the ETU website in due course.
Photo: The Start of the Men's swim at Bled Junior European Cup 2010
Find more details about this event - 2011 Bled ETU Triathlon Junior European Cup