British Triathlon: Nottingham to host 2017 Mixed Relay Cup

Four Olympic medals may already adorn the walls of the Brownlee family home, but Britain’s trailblazing triathlon brothers want more – two apiece, to be precise, at Tokyo 2020.

But that will only happen should Olympic organisers agree to the inclusion of a mixed relay event to the programme in four years’ time.

It is an addition the Brownlees would welcome with open arms, having already been crowned Commonwealth champions at Glasgow 2014 alongside Jodie Stimpson and Vicky Holland.

And for the brothers, should their hopes come to fruition, it could signal a new era for the sport at every level.

“I’d absolutely love to see it in the Olympic programme, I think triathlon deserves more than the individual medals it has at the moment,” said two-time Olympic gold medallist Alistair.

“I’m a bit biased but I think it is a fantastic sport, and it embodies so much of what the Olympics is about.

“It involves three sports, but it’s also mixed gender and great to watch, so I think it is a true Olympic discipline and it would be fantastic to see it in Tokyo.”

Jonny, who won bronze and silver in London and Rio respectively, added: “As an athlete, it gives us another chance to win a medal.

“But aside from that, I think it’s what the Olympic ideals are all about.  It’s exciting to watch as a spectator, it’s short and fast which I think is important for the Olympics, and also, it’s fun for the athlete.

“For selfish reasons, it would give triathlon more exposure at the Olympics, which I think it deserves.”

While a decision is expected in July this year, the brothers will be showcasing the sport in all its glory regardless come September 2 in the inaugural British Triathlon Mixed Relay Cup in Nottingham.

The race, featuring elite team relays with international stars plus teams from across the UK and a Great Britain Under-23 and Junior squad, will incorporate the city’s Victoria Embankment and Trent Bridge.

And with an expected crowd of 20,000 spectators and a live BBC television audience watching the action unfold, Jonny insists there is no better way to capitalise on the sport’s ever-growing popularity.

“I can’t wait to get involved, I think it’s a great format of the sport, it’s exciting to race in, exciting to watch, and I think it’s just what the sport needs,” he said.

“I think it has been a long time coming. A lot of the feedback we got after mixed relay events, particularly after the Glasgow Commonwealth Games, was how much people enjoyed watching it, and how good it is for the sport.

“I think it is a very good year to start a mixed team event like this. London 2012 increased the profile of triathlon massively, and the Glasgow Games moved it on a bit further.

“It brought relay to the general public, and Rio moved the exposure of triathlon on again, so we need to build on that.”

But while 2016 saw the siblings continue to dominate the international triathlon scene, questions remain as to what 2017 has in store.

For Jonny, that’s the small matter of becoming World champion after missing out in a memorable finish in the Cozumel final last year, but for Alistair, such plans are still somewhat up in the air.

“At the moment, the Gold Coast Commonwealth Games is on the horizon,” he said. “I’ve been lucky enough to go to one Games before and win there, so it would be fantastic to do it again.

“I’m seeing how I enjoy different types of racing this year and then I’ll sit down and make a more detailed plan for the next few years.

“I definitely want to keep one foot in the door of the Olympic distance, with the thoughts that maybe Tokyo could be on the horizon, especially if there is a relay in it.”

But for his brother, more concrete goals have been put in place.

“It’s always a tough year, post-Olympics, to become World champion because it’s very busy, but that’s the aim,” he said.

“I have to start well, but I ideally don’t want to race too much, but if you want to become World champion you basically have to podium in each race.

“I’ll try my best to do that in the Gold Coast, and after last year’s events in Mexico, I’m more determined than ever.”

The British Triathlon Mixed Relay Cup Nottingham takes place on Saturday 2 September 2017. Come and watch Britain’s best athletes going head-to-head with teams of two men and two women in world-class triathlon action. Visit for more information

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