Triathlon Magazine Canada
The PTO’s Collins Cup
Could it finally be here? The Collins Cup has been years in the making and now, thanks to a huge influx of cash to the Professional Triathletes Organisation (PTO) from billionaire Michael Moritz and his company Crankstart Investments, it appears the event will actually happen this year. So what is the Collins Cup?
Based on a similar format to golf’s Ryder Cup, the Collins Cup will feature 12 separate “matches” of three racers from the teams made up of athletes from the U.S., Europe and “Internationals.” The PTO owns the event and intends for the race to be an annual competition.
Qualification for the Collins Cup is open to any professional triathlete who is a member in good standing with the PTO. Any licensed professional triathlete is eligible for membership, and there are no membership fees or costs.
Featuring teams of 12 athletes (six men and six women), points will be awarded based on the winners of each of the 12 “matches” between an athlete from each team.
The inaugural race will take place on Aug. 28, 2021.
The race will take place at the same venue as the Challenge Championship – the X-Bionicsphere in Samorin, Slovakia. A training complex that serves almost 30 different sports, the X-Bionicsphere has been the only venue for the Challenge Championship since it started in 2017.
The race will be made up of a 2-km swim, 80-km bike and an 18-km run.
The first eight members of each team will be decided based on the PTO World Rankings. The final four spots on each team will be determined by the “non-athlete” members of the PTO board, based on suggestions from the team captains.
The night before the race the team captains will decide the various matchups for the Collins Cup racing.
An athlete from each team will compete in an individual race of three – there will be 12 separate race matches, each 10 minutes apart.
During the bike and run sections of the race the athletes will be able to communicate with their team captains and the communication will be broadcast to the TV audience. Team captains and the viewing audience will have access to live metrics (pace, power, etc.).
During the bike and run portions of the event, each athlete will have a radio and be in contact with their respective team captains.
The winner of each race’s team will earn three points, with second earning two points and third taking one point. Bonus points will also be awarded – winning by over two minutes will earn ½ point, a four-minute-plus win will earn one point and winning by six minutes or more will be worth 1 ½ points.
The Collins Cup and the Broken Spokes
The winning team with the most points will claim the Collins Cup. The third-place team will be awarded the Broken Spokes Trophy.
Olympian Simon Whitfield and Ironman champion Lisa Bentley are two of the captains of the international team. Canadian athletes are likely to be key players for the Internationals, too, with Lionel Sanders sitting atop the men’s ranking for the team and Paula Findlay currently in second. Canadian Jackson Laundry sits in eighth in the standings, putting him very much in the running for a “captain’s pick.”—KM