World's Elite Triathletes Come Together in Japan for 2012 ITU World Triathlon Yokohama

Japan once again demonstrated its acclaimed know-how and organisational expertise in holding leading international sporting events with the successful staging of the 2012 ITU World Triathlon Yokohama on the weekend of September 29 and 30. Large numbers of Japanese sport fans showed up to cheer more than 1,300 triathletes and 16 para-triathletes, creating a highly festive atmosphere in Yokohama, located in the Tokyo bay.

The Elite competitions for men and women ended Saturday with victories by Portugal's Joao Silva and Sweden's Lisa Norden, followed by the Age Group, Relay, and Para Triathlon competitions on Sunday.

World-class athletes from 19 countries were present for the Elite competitions, including London 2012 Games silver medallist Javier Gomez from Spain on the men's side and London 2012 Games silver and bronze medallists Lisa Norden from Sweden and Erin Densham from Australia on the women's field.

France's leading triathlete, Laurent Vidal, said: "Organisation of the competition was perfect. We know that in Japan there is never any trouble. Plenty of volunteers were everywhere to check the course road."

Among the many spectators cheering on the athletes was Masuro Miyakawa, 35, who said: "I came from Tokyo with my friends. Many people came today [Saturday] to see the race. I really enjoyed myself as we supported all the athletes. I definitely will come again next year."

Tsunekazu Takeda, IOC member and President of both Tokyo 2020 and the Japanese Olympic Committee, said: "This was a great sport weekend for the city of Yokohama, as well as for Japan. I am proud that a Japanese city was chosen to host one of the ITU World Triathlon Series. The course, which passed through a number of Yokohama's many historical waterfront sites, was lined with hundreds thousands of enthusiastic spectators. The overall organisation was seamless, showing once again the ability of the Japanese to host highly professional, first-rate sporting events."

Yokohama (located in the Tokyo bay) is barely a half hour by train from the heart of Japan's capital, where Tokyo 2020 proposes to stage the most compact, sustainable and athlete-focused Olympic and Paralympic Games ever, is the proposed site of football matches in 2020.

Japan's strong organisational expertise and passion for sport underpin Tokyo 2020's compelling bid to organise exciting and innovative Games in one of the world's most forward-thinking cities.
Image of the event

Elite men competition begins at the Yokohama Port in the Tokyo Bay

Mami Sato

Three-time Paralympic long jumper Mami Sato won the Para Triathlon competition on Sunday