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Geneva celebrates with great fanfare the return of sporting events and becomes the new capital of Triathlon



The 2021 edition in brief:

  • With more than 3,500 registered, the La Tour Genève Triathlon becomes the largest triathlon in Switzerland

  • All of Geneva vibrated this weekend to the rhythm of the triathlon

  • The new location and the new courses on the left bank delighted the hearts, arms and legs of the participants

  • On the queen distance (Half) Tom Hug snatches victory from Thomas Huwiler, sponsor of the event and winner of the last edition

  • More than 10,000 CHF in donations collected for the UNHCR


It’s a glorious and festive return for this new edition of the La Tour Genève Triathlon with 3,523 registered. From the youngest to the oldest, from beginners to the most athletic, with or without disabilities, everyone found what they were looking for by participating in one of the 7 race formats offered. Increasingly popular each year, the event, a victim of its success, had to refuse several hundred applicants and close several races before the event.

The new Eaux-Vives beach, the epicenter of the event, won over more than one. “It’s a lot bigger and gives us more space. For swimming it's great to have a real sandy beach and the location is really nice” say the members of the Lazy Boys Track Club team. Indeed, this new location makes it possible to accommodate a larger number of participants while respecting the health measures in force.

In an idyllic setting, the triathletes swam in open water in Lake Geneva, cycled on closed roads before finishing with a run in front of the famous Jet d'Eau. The Australian-style outing, offered for participants in the Half and Standard/Olympic formats, offered a fabulous spectacle for the supporters.


A TRIUMPHAL edition


In this majestic environment and with the sun shining, the races began on Saturday morning under the encouragement of the administrative advisor of the City of Geneva in charge of the Department of Security and Sports, Marie Barbey-Chpuis. “I admire the triathletes participating in this weekend's events which are the culmination of many hours of training for all of us. The City of Geneva is very happy to support this event which brings together a large audience in a grandiose setting and which contributes to the influence of our city well beyond the cantonal borders.”


The day began with one of the most popular formats, the Standard/Olympic, which saw the Frenchman Ludovic Roussel set the Geneva circuit on fire in 1h57'51. The best female, Tina In-Albun from Basel, won the event in 2h18'18.


In the afternoon, the young hopefuls of the discipline, aged 14-15 years old, took part in the final of the Swiss Triathlon Youth League circuit. This fifth and final round was brilliantly won by the Swiss Bastian Widmer and the German Jara Banka.


And to end the day on Saturday in style, the Olympic medalist, Jérémy Desplanches did the honor of his presence by participating in the Short relay. He started swimming with a bang and then passed the baton to his teammates, long-time friends. His team “Like old times” finished in 4th place with the chocolate medal. “The main thing was to have fun. It’s great to see such a sporty Geneva with a lot of people involved.” The two victories in the Individual Short went to Frenchmen Hugo Arrachart and Alana Bortoli.


One “Tom” can hide another


This Sunday morning, at dawn, many participants set off on the queen distance, the Half. It is the Genevan Tom Hug who dethrones the godfather of the event, Thomas Huwiler by winning first place in 3h22'14. After a very close neck and neck between colleagues from the Geneva triathlon club, Tom was able to maintain his first place from the end of the swim to the finish line. The new champion says: “I really liked the race. It was my first Half format. Despite the weather, there was a lot of encouragement, they are great. I thank the organization, the public and Geneva. I am very happy."


The former title holder looks back on his racing experience: “it was a very good race, great organization. It was great to be able to change sides and discover this new body of water and these new courses. On a personal level, I'm disappointed because I had the goal of winning. I knew it was going to be difficult against Tom who is very talented and who was doing his first half. In the running I tried to come back but I suffered at the end. I think I had a great race and I put all my soul into it but it wasn't enough. I still find it magnificent to see talents like Tom emerge here in Geneva.”


As for the female athletes, it was the Swiss Sarah Thoeni who won the race over this distance against Lydia Steinbach in 4h38'23.


During the Half, the youngest also had their moment of glory with two aquathlons organized and a dedicated changing park to do “like the adults”.

The event concluded with the Discovery format, the opportunity to test yourself in the discipline. The Swiss Luna Sommerfeld and Vincent Steiger stood out by winning first place.


Reunion and solidarity


The need to get together and support each other was also felt throughout the weekend. The volunteers, faithful to their posts, were more than happy to relive the atmosphere of a sporting event: “thanks for everything! The welcome, the volunteers, everything was great. It’s great to be so well supervised,” says Gaëlle Menoud, volunteer, with enthusiasm.


A spirit of camaraderie and solidarity reigned throughout the weekend. This generosity was illustrated by a collection of more than 10,000 CHF in donations for the UNHCR, charitable partner, in favor of refugees.


The big Triathlon family


This year again, the La Tour Hospital is delighted to support the event: “This year we have, in addition to the tent dedicated to physiotherapy, a medical-sports area in the heart of the village to be as close as possible to the participants .


The objective is to share the sports medicine expertise of La Tour Hospital through advice and discussions. We are proud to be the Title Partner of the event, one more year, and congratulate all the triathletes for their race” says Dr Boris Gojanovic, sports doctor at La Tour Hospital.

As for the organizers, Eric Monnot, President of the Geneva Triathlon Association, declared: “we are delighted to have been able to return Geneva to its triathlon and to make the City vibrate around this beautiful celebration of the triple effort. As a bonus this year, a return to basics, on the left bank, which moves me and gives the event a new lease of life”.


Finally, Benjamin Chandelier, Director of the event, would like to send a little word to all the triathletes of the weekend: “It is with joy and pride that we close this 31st edition which has broken new participation records. I would like to congratulate all the participants of the weekend for their achievements. It is thanks to you that the event is now the largest triathlon in Switzerland. On behalf of the organizing committee, I would also like to thank our Title Partner L'Hôpital de La Tour and all our partners who support us. A big thank you to the competent authorities and administrations of the City and Canton of Geneva for their support and for allowing us to organize the event in such good conditions. And finally, a huge thank you to all our volunteers for their invaluable help and without whom the event could not take place.”

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