The finishes in the men’s and the women’s races couldn’t have been any tighter in Piombino. The winning gap was 0.1sec in both events, favouring Italy’s Gregorio Paltrinieri and compatriot Giulia Gabbrielleschi.
Two amazing races were staged at the shores of Piombino as both the men’s and the women’s competitions offered extremely tight finishes. And not only for the titles: in the men’s event the top 12 hit the panel within 10 seconds while the first ten also stormed to the finish line in a span of ten seconds among the women.
Just like a week ago in Barcelona, the winners came from the same nation: last time the Germans could celebrate two golds, now host Italians did a fine job as they came 1-2 in the men’s 10km and 1-3 in the women’s.
European champion and Olympic bronze medallist Gregorio Paltrinieri managed to hit in just 0.1sec ahead of compatriot Domenico Acerenza, Tokyo runner-up Kristof Rasovszky of Hungary was extremely close too, he came third just 0.8sec behind King Greg. Fourth placed Dario Verani wasn’t far either, he was just 0.6 sec away from the Magyar.
As for the ladies, Gabbrielleschi and Germany’s Leonie Beck fought shoulder-by-shoulder at the end and the Italian was just a fraction of a second faster in touching in – again, the timekeepers recorded a 0.1sec gap. Martina de Memme, winner of Leg 1, came a further 2.7sec adrift for the bronze.
The field can come together one more time this year in just six days at Alghero, for the final leg of the series.
LEN Open Water Cup, Season 2021
• Leg 1: 14 August – Ohrid (MKD) Winners: Marc-Antoine Olivier (FRA) & Martina de Memme (ITA)
• Leg 2: 19 September – Rijeka (CRO) – Cancelled
• Leg 3: 25 September – Barcelona (ESP) Winners: Florian Wellbrock (GER) & Jeanette Spiwoks (GER)
• Leg 5: 9 October – Alghero (ITA)