Sprint Triathlon – Qualification Criteria for 2017 ITU World Championship


2016 USAT Age Group Sprint Triathlon National Championship (Omaha, NE):

USAT will allot eight (8) ITU World Championship spots for women in each age group and eight (8) ITU World Championship spots for men in each age group at this event. Additional spots may be available if not all ITU World Championship spots were claimed at the ITU draft legal sprint qualifier in New Orleans, LA on November, 5, 2016.

All athletes claiming an ITU World Championship pass down spot must meet the minimum eligibility requirements in order to receive a pass down slot which includes:

  • a) finishing 9th to 18th in the respective age group, OR
  • b) being within 30% of the first place finishing athlete’s time in the age group at the USAT National Championship race. 

Note that the deadline to claim ITU World Championship spots is 35 days before the ITU Triathlon World Championship, regardless of how many slots may remain open after that deadline. USAT reaches Team USA capacity in each age group when 18 athletes have confirmed their spots.

  • Example 1: Joe Doe finishes in 7th in his age group in Omaha, NE with a finish time that is 10% behind the top finisher’s time in his age group. Joe is eligible for an ITU World Championship spot because there are 8 spots available in his age group.
  • Example 2: Kirk Smith finishes in 7th in his age group at the USAT National Championship in Omaha, NE with a finish time that is 34% behind the top finisher’s time in his age group. Although Kirk did not finish within 30% of the first place finisher’s time, he is still eligible for a world championship spot because he was still in the top 8 finishers.
  • Example 3: Jane Wynn finishes 19th in her age group at the USAT National Championship in Omaha, NE with a finish time that is 26.5% back of the top finisher’s time in her age group.  Not all of the eight world championship slots have been claimed by finishers in front of her in her age group. Even though Jane was not in the top 18 in her age group Jane would still be eligible for an ITU World Championship spot if one became available because she was less than 30% behind her age group’s top finisher.
  • Example 4: Janice McGee finishes 19th in her age group at the USAT National Championships in Omaha, NE with a finish time that is 32% behind the top finisher’s time in her age group. Even if the eight ITU World Championship spots have not be claimed by finishers in front her, Janice would not be eligible for a world championship spot because she fails to meet the finish place and percentage back requirement. 

2016 ITU Draft-Legal Sprint Triathlon World Championship Qualifier in New Orleans, LA on November 5: 

This event will qualify athletes for the ITU Draft Legal Sprint Triathlon World Championship in 2017.

USAT will reserve up to ten (10) ITU World Championship spots for women in each in each age group and up to ten (10) ITU World Championship spots for men in each age group at this event. In order to be eligible to claim his/her ITU World Championship spot, each qualifying athlete must place within the top 10 in their age group AND be within the established cut-off time using Table 1 shown below (calculations were based on results at the USAT Age Group Non-Draft Sprint Triathlon National Championship in Milwaukee, WI in 2015).

Athletes will compete in this event based on age as of December 31, 2017.

Note that because athlete’s eligibility to claim an ITU World Championship spot at this event is based on results from the USAT Age Group Sprint Triathlon National Championship, it is possible that not all 10 spots in each age group will be filled (meaning some people will miss the time back qualification).

  • Example 1: Michael Smith places first in his 50-54 aged up age group at the 2016 ITU Sprint Worlds Qualifier and automatically qualifies for the 2017 ITU Sprint Triathlon World Championship. His finish time is 60 minutes. That time would be what USAT uses to calculate the percentage back for the age group.
  • Example 2: John Jay finishes 11th in the 50-54 aged up age group, only 4% back of the first place finish time in his age group. Even if he was within the qualifying percent of the top finisher’s time in the age group according to the table published by USAT, John would not be eligible for a world championship spot since he was not among the top ten finishers in his age group.
  • Example 3: Janice Field, competing in the 20-24 age group,  places 9th in her age group with a time that is 12% behind her age group’s top finisher.  She would earn the spot based on her meeting both the finish place and time qualification (14.1%) for her age group.  If she had been (11th) eleventh place, she wouldn’t have met qualification.

Table 1

Age Percentage Between 1st-18th*
15-19 Male 9.0%
15-19 Female 14.9%
20-24 Male 9.6%
20-24 Female 14.1%
25-29 Male 13.4%
25-29 Female 14.0%
30-34 Male 10.9%
30-34 Female 11.3%
35-39 Male 16.7%
35-39 Female 16.1%
40-44 Male 8.3%
40-44 Female 13.2%
45-49 Male 7.2%
45-49 Female 11.7%
50-54 Male 7.0%
50-54 Female 13.7%
55-59 Male 11.0%
55-59 Female 14.6%
60-64 Male 10.6%
60-64 Female 17.7%
65-69 Male 10.2%
65-69 Female 25.2%
70-74 Male 19.0%
70-74 Female 43.5%
75-79 Male 31.4%
75-79 Female 21.4%
80-84 Male 22.2%
80-84 Female TBA
85-89 Male 29.6%
85-89 Female TBA

*Calculations were based on results at the USAT Age Group Non-Draft Sprint Triathlon National Championship in Milwaukee, WI in 2015. In the event there were not 18 finishers in a specific age group, the percentage is based on the last finisher.