Brothers Alistair and Jonny Brownlee are in optimistic mood as they gear up to race for places in Great Britain’s 2016 Olympics team.
The pair won gold and bronze medals respectively at London 2012 and their first chance of repeat qualification comes via August 2’s test event in Olympic host city Rio de Janeiro and September 19’s World Series final in Chicago.
Top-three finishes at both will bring automatic places in the three-man Olympic team and as they launched this year’s ‘Brownlee Tri’ – to take place at and around Harewood House, near their native Leeds, on September 26 – the brothers also looked to the longer term.
Both have tasted success in this season’s World Series, Jonny lying seventh with Alistair two places higher after wins in Cape Town and London sandwiched a runner-up finish in Yokohama.
Alistair, the elder brother by two years at 27, said: “I’m about to go away to a preparation camp this afternoon for five weeks of training in Switzerland, then racing in Hamburg for the World Series and on to Brazil for two weeks to get ready for Rio.
“It’s going all right at the moment, I’ve had two wins and a second, and two other good results will put me right in the running when we get to the grand final.”
If Alistair is finding top gear at the perfect time, Jonny will need to recapture the early-season form which brought him wins in Australia and New Zealand, having not scored a WTS point since.
He said: “I was happy with my form, the Gold Coast and Auckland were really, really good, two of my best races ever.
“Then (finishing 42nd) in London, I had all the bad luck I’ve had in the whole of my life in that one race, I think.
“Hopefully that’s the end of the bad luck now and I can use the form that I’ve got.”