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Sanders vs. Long: Part III, the slugfest in Slovakia and the smackdown in Samorin—literally, the Ryder Cup of triathlon. Two things are for certain about the Professional Triathletes Organization’s (PTO) inaugural flagship event, the Collins Cup: its match-play concept is novel, and it’s a must-watch event for triathlon fans.
Finally (finally!) the PTO will be asking 36 of the world’s finest triathletes this weekend: Who rules triathlon? What are your options to see the inaugural Collins Cup? There’s only one answer: here. Scroll down for the PTO broadcast, which will air live at 6:30 A.M. The event will be streamed for the full seven hours on Saturday. (Before that, it will show the opening ceremony and picks.)
Before we get to the Collins Cup: a little about it. Need it shortened? You can read this here.
Collins Cup: Where does it come from?
Charles Adamo, the PTO chairman who is a latecomer to triathlon, was the brainchild behind the Collins Cup, whose goal was to reward long-course racers for their hard work. Additionally, Adamo was instrumental in getting Mike Moritz, a billionaire venture capitalist, to invest.
Collins Cup is built on the idea that European, American, and non-European teams (i.e. the Internationals) can foster regional pride and get one over on the opposition, and that triathletes will want to watch. It hasn’t been easy getting started since it lacks the nearly century-old tradition of the Ryder Cup. With initial plans to locate the Collins Cup in Roth, Germany, the X-bionic sphere in Samorin, Slovakia, has finally found its permanent home.
Moritz’s Crankstart Investments has committed to a multi-million-dollar long-term investment, meaning the PTO will provide a big budget, spectacular broadcast that will rival anything in triathlon history.
A description of the Collins Cup
There are six women and six men on each team, the U.S., Europe, and the Internationals. On the next day, the teams will compete in 12 head-to-head races over a 100 kilometer course (2.5K swim, 80 kilometer bike, 18 kilometer run) inside and near the x-bionic sphere. It’s the shorter-than-half 100K distance that’s being pushed by the PTO at Challenge Daytona; it was raced by the pros there.
Every match results in three points for the winning team, two points for the runner-up, and one point for the last place finisher. There are also bonus points for the margin of victory: 1.5 points for a six-minute or greater lead over the third-placed triathlete, 1 point for a four-minute lead, and 0.5 points for a two-minute lead.
As the points are tallied, Tiffany & Co. will design and manufacture the inaugural Collins Cup, which will be presented to the winning team captain. A less auspicious trophy, the Broken Spoke trophy, goes to the losers.
Watch out for
There will be 36 of the best athletes in the world to compete, with teams selected via rankings and then “captain’s picks.” The big names include four-time Kona champion Daniela Ryf and Lionel Sanders, representing Canada. American athletes include Sam Long, Katie Zafares, and Taylor Knibb, who both won Olympic medals. The Collins Cup final teams are as follows with a few last-minute substitutions:
The United States team
- Möeschl, Skye
- Chanel Sodaro
- Hering, Jackie
- Josephine McCauley
- Theodore Knibb
- Izaferes, Katie
- Theodore Long
- Theodore von Berg
- Hanson, Matt
- Theodore Kanute
- Theodore Metzler
- Andy Starykowicz
The International Team
- Terry Adam
- Ms. Findlay
- Ianni Metzler
- Sherry Crowley
- Elise Salthouse
- Sheila Lester
- Sanders, Colonel
- Brandon Currie
- The Appletons
- Maxim Neumann
- Tyler Smith
- Wilson Laundry
The European Union
- Theodora Ryf
- Marie Haug
- Theodore Berry
- Lauren Lawrence
- A. Pallant-Browne
- Ira Frodeno
- Ingeborg Iden
- Patricia Lange
- John Skipper
- Daniel Brinkegard
- KENLE, Sebi
It is not just the competitors who are glitterati in triathlon. Each region has two legends of the sport. Six-time Ironman world champion Mark Allen and 1995 World Triathlon world champion Karen Smyers are at the helm for the USA.
Who will win the competition? Can anyone beat Frodeno? If you pit the best of the best against the best of the rest, will you gain points, or will you sacrifice the best against the best? Can Team Europe’s female lineup be beaten in any way?
Captains have an important role to play in this area. To determine matchups, rather than random drawing, each captain will name their athlete pick during Wednesday’s opening ceremonies. The Europeans name a player, the Internationals decide who to pit against them, and finally the United States. Those familiar with fantasy football may find it similar to the snake draft concept.
A $1.5 million “Prize Purse” will be awarded
Although there is no prize money, per se, for the Collins Cup, there will be $ 1.5 million in appearance fees just for being selected and going – making it the biggest purse in triathlon history. On the start line, triathletes are paid according to their PTO world ranking, so the current #1 (Frodeno and Ryf) will earn $90,000 each, all the way down to $20,000.
The Collins Cup fantasy game also offers prizes, including a trip to the 2022 event.
The race has announced a secondary dashboard will be shown on the screen with data such as heart rate, speed, real-time point predictions, and where athletes are in terms of their time. As the race unfolds, viewers will also hear the captains communicating with the mic’d up athletes and encouraging them to greater effort – probably for glory, not for money.
Collins Cup Watching Guide
Here’s your chance to listen! The feed will be available live and on demand on OutsideTV and the OutsideTV app, as well as simulcast here on Outside as soon as the broadcast begins – about 30 minutes before the first athletes go off.
3 women will start at 1 pm on Saturday, August 28. Each match will begin at ten minute intervals at local time in Slovakia (7 a.m. ET in the U.S.). A two-hour delay will occur between the men’s start and the women’s start (3 p.m. local time, 9 a.m. ET). It should take around seven hours to complete the entire event.
You can watch the PTO event live, as well as an edited highlights show afterward, as well as watch a documentary, Beyond Human, if you are not in the U.S. There is a Collins Cup website where you can check to see who is showing the event and what segments are being aired in your area.