LONDON (Reuters) – For Jonny Brownlee his Olympic target is simple — beat his older brother and gold should be his.
The 26-year-old was named alongside Alistair, the Olympic champion, in Britain’s six-strong Triathlon squad for the Rio Games on Tuesday and he will be hoping to turn the tables having finished with a bronze medal in London four years ago.
“The way Alistair’s training at the moment, if I beat him then I think it should be gold,” he said of his 28-year-old sibling who has struggled with injury and needed surgery on his Achilles tendon last year.
“Four years down the line I’m a bit stronger, fitter, cleverer. But we very much go into these races as if it’s us two against the rest of the world. When we get to the hard bit of the run then we start racing against each other.”
Jonny’s hopes of beating his brother in London four years ago were scuppered by a 15-second time penalty he incurred for mounting his bike too early in the transition.
Two years later he again trailed in behind Alistair at the Commonwealth Games, this time finishing second.
Providing both are 100 percent fit, they should add to their medal haul in Rio — a demanding course that suits their style.
“This is a strong and very experienced team. Arguably we’re in a stronger position going into the Games than we were four years ago, but the competition is also stronger too,” team manager Brendan Purcell said in a statement on Tuesday.
“The sea swim and hilly, technical bike course in Rio suit the strengths of our athletes, so we have all the ingredients for a great Games.”
The Brownlees will be joined in the men’s race by 22-year-old Gordon Benson who won gold at the inaugural European Games in Baku last year.
Twice world champion Helen Jenkins leads the women’s team as she competes at her third Olympics, looking for a first medal after finishing fifth in London.
(Reporting by Martyn Herman, editing by Ed Osmond)