Giulio Molinari, Ruedi Wild, Frederic Funk, Bart Aernouts, Thomas Steger, Ruben Zepunkte, Nicola Spirig, Anne Haug, Svenja Thoes, Lena Berlinger, Sara Perez Sala: these are just some of the pro athletes who could lay claim to the European Championship Middle Distance title this Sunday in the 2021 ETU Challenge Middle Distance Championships in Walchsee.
The European Championship, won in 2019 by Andrey Bryukhankov (RUS) and Katrina Rye (GBR) in Targu Mures, will take place in the beautiful Austrian setting through breath-taking mountainous scenery. It’s no coincidence much can be expected from men like Wild, Funk, Steger and Molinari, all athletes with both explosive and endurance power.
Among the women, most eyes are on Anne Haug and Nicola Spirig. Both ladies have already seen success this season: Spirig won ANFI CHALLENGEMOGAN-GRANCANARIA and Haug more recently won CHALLENGEST.PÖLTEN. It is expected both ladies will push everyone’s and of course their own limits in their battle to call themselves Europe’s best athlete over the Middle Distance. Spaniard Sara Perez Sala is perhaps the biggest outsider: in her first Middle Distance she took fourth place at CHALLENGEMIAMI, Perez Sala and became an athlete to be reckoned with. After that fourth place, several good races followed and she will do everything to end up on the podium in Walchsee.
Three days earlier on Thursday, Perez Sala will also be on the start of the 2021 ETU Aquathlon Championships in Walchee and there she is considered one of the favourites as well. In the men’s race, Slovakia’s Richard Varga seems to be the man to keep an eye on. With his incredibly strong swim, he almost always comes out of the water first at World Cups and international races and his running level is also outstanding.
In addition to the three European Championships, CHALLENGEKAISERWINKL-WALCHSEE features an extensive programme of side events and the region will be a spectacle of triathlon for four days, including Junior Challenge on Saturday.
CHALLENGEKAISERWINKL-WALCHSEE will start on Thursday 24 June at 5:00 p.m. (CEST) with the 2021 Europe Triathlon Union Aquathlon Championships. The 2021 Europe Triathlon Union Challenge Middle Distance Championships Walchsee and 2021 Europe Triathlon Union Aquabike Championships Walchsee will take place on Sunday 27 June at 8:30a.m. (CEST). You can follow through live tracking and all important race updates via challenge-family.live and our social media channels. In addition, the ETU Middle Distance Championships on Sunday will be live-streamed via challenge-family.live.