Here’s a detailed look at the matches that make up the inaugural Collins Cup on August 28th in Samorin, Slovakia. I’ve scaled down the times from the typical half distance to the Collins Cup distances of 2k swim, 80k bike and 18k run (total distance 100k), also taking into account that most of the bike will be on a fast, mildly rolling motorway. Without any previous races on the course it is difficult to come up with “exact times”, however the differences between the athletes are much more solid and should give you a good indication of who is likely to swim faster than the others etc.
Another aspect that is hard to account for is the unique format of the Collins Cup with only three athletes in the race. This is likely making it easier to break away from the others as there are fewer athletes who will put in extra work to close gaps. In addition, everyone is not only racing for themselves but also for the team – so even athletes falling behind are likely to be working extra hard for the team, to avoid losing too much time and to prevent the others teams from earning bonus points.
As always, the numbers shown in this “Seedings” post should not be considered “the last word” – the intention is to serve as starting points for conversations. So please feel free to add your observations and opinions to my data-centric analysis below when entering your picks for the PTO Fantasy Game for the Collins Cup!
Each of the matches below has its interesting aspects. Here are a few extra caveats on the data below:
- The US wildcards on the women’s side, Taylor Kibb and Katie Zaferes are very hard to predict – Taylor has had only one race on the half distance, Katie none so far. Obviously, with the limited amount of data points you can’t put too much faith in the expected times shown below – giving a lot of room for speculations!
- Some athletes were forced to take a break to deal with injuries. For example, Teresa’s last race was in January, and Sebi was dealing with an injury that kept him from starting a race since May. Will they be able to race at almost 100% in their first race back?
- It’s hard to properly account for recent travel and racing stress. A lot of athletes have had intercontinental travel to make it to Samorin and might still be adjusting to time zone changes. Some athletes have been racing a lot in recent weeks on a number of distances – e.g. in WTCS races (Taylor, Katie), Escape from Alcatraz (Emma, Ben), some even in a long-distance race (Jocelyn at IM Finland, Lionel at IM Copenhagen). What will this mean when they will need their absolute best in their matches?
Match 1: Daniela Ryf vs. Teresa Adam vs. Taylor Knibb
- Daniela Ryf: 70%
- Taylor Knibb: 15%
- Teresa Adam: 15%
Match 2: Lucy Charles-Barclay vs. Paula Findlay vs. Katie Zaferes
- Lucy Charles-Barclay: 60%
- Paula Findlay: 25%
- Katie Zaferes: 15%
Match 3: Annie Haug vs. Jeannie Metzler vs. Jackie Hering
- Anne Haug: 65%
- Jeanni Metzler: 20%
- Jackie Hering: 15%
Match 4: Holly Lawrence vs. Ellie Salthouse vs. Skye Moench
- Holly Lawrence: 50%
- Ellie Salthouse: 25%
- Skye Moench: 25%
Match 5: Emma Pallant-Browne vs. Sarah Crowley vs. Chelsea Sodaro
- Chelsea Sodaro: 40%
- Emma Pallant-Browne: 40%
- Sarah Crowley: 20%
Match 6: Katrina Matthews vs. Carrie Lester vs. Jocelyn McCauley
- Katrina Matthews: 60%
- Carrie Lester: 30%
- Jocelyn McCauley: 10%
Match 7: Jan Frodeno vs. Sam Appleton vs. Sam Long
- Jan Frodeno: 50%
- Sam Long: 30%
- Sam Appleton: 20%
Match 8: Gustav Iden vs. Kyle Smith vs. Colin Chartier
- Gustav Iden: 70%
- Kyle Smith: 20%
- Collin Chartier: 10%
Match 9: Sebastian Kienle vs. Lionel Sanders vs. Andrew Starykowicz
- Lionel Sanders: 60%
- Sebastian Kienle: 25%
- Andrew Starykowicz: 15%
Note: This match is probably the hardest to predict as there are recent developments that did not play a role in the seed times above. The most obvious one is that Lionel has completed IM Copenhagen just 6 days before this race, and no one really knows how well he’s recovered and how hard he’ll be able to race. In addition, Sebastian Kienle was forced to take an injury break after racing in May, and this will be his first race back. You can be pretty sure that Andrew Starykowicz would love to beat my numbers and win his match.
Match 10: Daniel Baekkegard vs. Max Neumann vs. Ben Kanute
- Daniel Baekkegard: 45%
- Ben Kanute: 35%
- Max Neumann: 20%
Match 11: Patrick Lange vs. Braden Currie vs. Matt Hanson
- Patrick Lange: 45%
- Matt Hanson: 30%
- Braden Currie: 25%
Match 12: Joe Skipper vs. Jackson Laundry vs. Justin Metzler
- Jackson Laundry: 60%
- Justin Metzler: 30%
- Joe Skipper: 10%