Hugo: Bermuda can be spectacular’ in Tokyo
Dan Hugo, the Bermuda triathlon coach, hopes the team can stick together as they have a shot of doing something “spectacular” at the 2020 Tokyo Olympics.
Bermuda pulled off a magnificent fifth place in the mixed team relay on Saturday at Southport beachfront, leaving Hugo brimming with pride.
“It was a big learning curve and it was a very proud moment for me to see Bermuda’s triathlon community hold their own,” Hugo said. “There was a very narrow pathway to something magical and it was spectacular.
“One or two more years of experience and Bermuda have a legitimate shot of doing something special.
“I would love to see the powers that be have that conversation.
“When I say experience, it takes investment; it takes the juniors getting supported and getting travel.”
Hugo, a former professional Xterra triathlete, paid special tribute to first-timers Smith and Hawley who laid the foundations for Duffy’s exceptional third leg that dragged Bermuda from seventh to fifth.
“Tyler and Erica had an ace up their sleeve in Flora,” said the 32-year-old, who married Duffy in December. “They didn’t ask for that and it added pressure.
“Tyler Butterfield was spectacular and Flora posted her best power on the bike for a ten-minute period and it showed what heart she had in it.
“It could be the only relay of Flora’s career … we certainly hope not and after [Saturday] there’s reason to consider it again.”
The South African said Bermuda’s superb performances in triathlon on the Gold Coast owe much to the years of hard work developing the sport on the island.
“The fact Bermuda has a relay team says lots about Tyler Butterfield, who really broke ground, and everyone who was involved in the late 1990s when they had the [Hamilton] ITU World Cup. “Flora saw that when she was a youngster ... and there’s the Iron Kids. An awful lot had to happen for Bermuda to have four athletes on the start line. It’s a tribute to many people. Not me, though, I’m very late to the party!”