Olympic triathlon marred by shambolic false-start

The men's race did not go swimmingly.

by Matt de Neef

There were chaotic scenes at the start of the men’s triathlon at the Tokyo Olympics this morning with a media boat forcing a restart of the race.

When the starting buzzer sounded, roughly half of the field jumped in the water to begin their swim leg, while the other half was blocked by a media boat positioned close to the starting pontoon.

Some of the competitors reportedly swam as far as 150 metres before being called back in for a restart.

The false start ultimately had little impact on the race itself, with Norway’s Kristian Blummenfelt taking gold, 11 seconds ahead of Great Britain’s Alex Yee, and 20 seconds ahead of New Zealand’s Hayden Wilde.

Men’s and women’s Olympic triathlon events comprise a 1,500 metre swim, 40 km bike leg, and a 10 km run. The women’s race will be held on Tuesday morning.