Loughborough Echo

Alex Yee wins gold in the triathlon mixed relay event


THE Brownlees might be synonymous with triathlon but Alex Yee could end up surpassing them both, writes Paul Eddison, of Sportsbeat.

After qualifying for Tokyo ahead of double Olympic champion Alistair Brownlee, Yee claimed individual silver ahead of Jonny earlier this week.

And on the final day of triathlon action, the pair combined with Georgia Taylor-Brown and Jess Learmonth to claim the maiden Olympic mixed relay gold.

Yee was given the responsibi­lity of the anchor leg, and with a 21-second lead, there was complete confidence from his teammates that he would bring it home.

However, when world champion Vincent Luis of France caught him on the bike, some doubts appeared among those watching, if not the team themselves.

Yee had judged his race to perfection, and left Luis trailing on the run, before revealing that the pair’s relationsh­ip goes back nearly a decade to London 2012 when Yee was just a teenage triathlon hopeful.

Luis explained: “Back in 2012 I did my first Olympics and I was asked if I had any gear to give to a young guy that had just started the triathlon. I just learned that it was Alex.”

Yee said: “I remember receiving a parcel from France and thinking it was really quite odd.

“But it was from Vince and he sent some of his Olympic kit. I was so young at the time and I remember thinking ‘wow, this is really amazing’.

“He is someone that inspired me so much. Vince is one of the people I look up to the most in the sport. It was pretty special. He’s just a legend.”

Still only 23, Yee is now an Olympic champion and twotime medallist.

The only people with a better return in Olympic triathlon are the Brownlee brothers.

What is most impressive about the former Loughborou­gh University student is his maturity.

In a sport where even the best can crack under pressure, he did not flinch at all when caught by the world champion.

Yee said: “I’d had a lot of informatio­n around the course so I knew Luis was coming fast and he’d worked quite hard. I knew at that point that I’d probably be able to get him on the run if I stayed with him on the bike.

“It was a big effort to get onto him at the start of the bike.

“I was in quite a good position because I knew he’d be a bit worried about Morgan (Pearson) behind as the US athlete was chasing.

“And I back myself to run well so I guess I played to my strengths and was a little bit cunning in a way but I’m really happy.”

For so long triathlon revolved around the Brownlees.

Now, as one of the quickest runners on the circuit and tactically astute beyond his years, the future belongs to Yee.

Stream every unmissable moment of Olympic Games Tokyo 2020 live on discovery+, the Streaming Home of the Olympics.

 ??  ?? GOLDEN FEELING: Alex Yee anchors GB to the triathlon mixed relay gold. Right, Yee with Georgia TaylorBrow­n, Jessica Learmonth and Jonny Brownlee
GOLDEN FEELING: Alex Yee anchors GB to the triathlon mixed relay gold. Right, Yee with Georgia TaylorBrow­n, Jessica Learmonth and Jonny Brownlee
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