Triathlon: Hyde Park will welcome the world’s best triathletes for one of the most exciting and high profile events at the London 2012 Olympic Games. The precise origins of Triathlon are unknown: some say that the sport began in France between the wars, others that it really developed in the United States during the late 1970s. Whatever the true history, Triathlon is now one of the fastest-growing sports in the world, and the London 2012 competition in Hyde Park promises to draw enormous and enthusiastic crowds
Field of play
The course is a 1,500m swim, followed by a 43km bike, finishing with a 10km run.
Triathlon at Games
More than half a million spectators lined the Sydney streets to watch the first ever Olympic Triathlon at the 2000 Games. The six Triathlon events held since the sport’s Olympic debut have been won by athletes from six different countries: Canada and Switzerland in 2000; New Zealand and Austria in 2004; and Germany and Australia in 2008.
Triathlon races combine swimming, cycling and running, in that order. Events are conducted over a variety of distances: for the Olympic Games, the men’s and women’s Triathlons will consist of a 1,500m swim, a 43km bike ride and a 10km run. The race is completed from start to finish, with no breaks. The transitions between the swim, the bike and the run are part of the race – crucial seconds can be gained or lost in the transition area
There are no heats; both the men’s and the women’s events consist of a single race. The first athlete to cross the finish line is declared the winner.
Officials are assigned to many different areas: the start and finish, the transition areas, lap counting, timing, wheel stations, penalty boxes and vehicle control. There is also a competition jury that rules on any protests or appeals.
Venue: Hyde Park
Transition: The changeovers between the three elements of the race
Transition time: The time it takes each competitor to complete their transition. These times are counted in their overall time for the race
Transition area: A location within which each athlete is allocated an area for the storage of clothing and equipment