500 days to Rio 2016, beware the Browlees will be ready

24/03/2015 by Steve Knowles

Today marks 500 days until the start of the Rio 2016 Olympic Games. A spectacular opening ceremony is scheduled for the Maracanã Stadium in Rio de Janeiro on 5 August, 2016, and will be followed by 16 days of sporting drama.

Triathlon will take place on 18 and 20 August, with the men’s event first to take place. 55 men and 55 women will take to Copacabana Beach with dreams of following Alistair Brownlee and Nicola Spirig (SUI) as the next Olympic champions.

Olympic Champion, Alistair Brownlee, said: “500 days sounds like a long time, but the Olympics is at the forefront of my mind now.”

He added: “We have our first opportunity to qualify in August, and that isn’t too far away now that the season is underway.”

British Triathlon’s selection criteria offers an opportunity for early nomination to Team GB by winning a medal at both the Rio test event this August and the ITU World Triathlon Grand Final in Chicago in September.

Like Brownlee, Non Stanford has her mind firmly focussed on August this year for an opportunity to experience what the Rio 2016 Olympic Games might be like. The 2013 ITU World Champion missed the whole of last season through injury but hopes to make her ITU World Triathlon Series return next month.

She said: “My focus is very much on qualifying for my first Olympic Games. The perfect scenario would be to get 500 days of consistent training between now and Rio, but I’m prepared for a few ups and downs along the way.”

Triathlon features as one of the first test events in Rio this summer 1-2 August. It will be free-to-view, allowing the Brazilian public to taste Olympic triathlon.

The Paralympic Games takes place 7-18 September and will feature Paratriathlon for the first time in history.

Photo - Delly Carr / ITU