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How Gwen Jorgensen’s 10K Time Stacks Up

  • By Bethany Mavis
  • Published May 29, 2014
Photo: Delly Carr/Triathlon.org

In 2011, at the London Olympic test event, American Gwen Jorgensen surprised triathlon fans when she ran her way to a runner-up finish against a stacked field and earned a spot on the 2012 Olympic team. The former collegiate swimmer and runner ran a 33:43 10K—the fastest run split of the day and five seconds faster than British favorite Helen Jenkins, who won the race. Jorgensen’s triathlon career, only in its second season, had gotten off to an inauspicious start with ITU PanAm Cup podiums and top-five ITU World Cup finishes, and only two other WTS starts (a DNF in Madrid and 27th place in Hamburg) prior to London.

Her runner-up finish—the highest by any American in a WTS race at that point—caused the U.S. to put their Olympic triathlon medal hopes on her shoulders, which perhaps was a bit too much to bear (after a mechanical on the bike, she finished 38th in the Olympic Games with the 10th fastest run split). But since the Games, Jorgensen has continued to improve, racking up multiple WTS wins, podiums, and fastest run splits. Her fastest triathlon 10K to date (31:41) came at the 2013 ITU WTS Stockholm race. While the course could have been a little short, she still won the race and had the fastest run by 45 seconds.

Jorgensen’s recent run dominance is reminiscent of great names in ITU such as 2008 Olympic gold medalist Emma Snowsill of Australia. One of the three-time ITU world champion’s most memorable run performances came in the 2010 ITU WTS Grand Final in Budapest, when she ran a 33:08 10K (the fastest split by almost two minutes) to take the victory a minute and a half over the runner-up. She also ran 33:16 to capture her Olympic victory, more than a minute faster than silver medalist Vanessa Fernandes.

On May 3, 2014, Jorgensen may have answered the question, “Just how fast can Gwen run a 10K?” when she raced an open 10K road race at the Sydney:10 in Sydney Olympic Park in Australia. Her 32:21 was the fastest overall female time in the race, and she beat out London Olympic runner Eloise Wellings and fellow triathlete Emma Jackson. In 2009, during her collegiate running career for the University of Wisconsin, she ran a 33:38.38 10K at the Mt. Sac Relays. (For reference, the women’s world record for 10,000 meters is 29:31.78, held by China’s Junxia Wang, set in 1993. The women’s American record, 30:22.22, has been held by Shalane Flanagan since 2008.)

Jorgensen’s impressive run performances and continued triathlon improvement give us more confidence to see an Olympic medal-winning performance come Rio 2016. But as a relative newcomer to triathlon who appears to be on a continuous rise, we’re still wondering how fast Gwen can go. Go to Triathlonlive.tv to find out how to watch Jorgensen and other top Americans race on the Olympic course at the 2014 ITU WTS London race this weekend.

RELATED PHOTOS: A Day Of Eating With Gwen Jorgensen

ITU World Triathlon Series 10K times for Gwen Jorgensen

33:43
Raced at: 2014 ITU WTS Yokohama (May 17, 2014)
Finish: 1st place in a time of 1:58:38
How it ranked: Fastest run split by 39 seconds

32:46
Raced at: 2014 ITU WTS Cape Town (April 26, 2014)
Finish: 3rd place in a time of 1:46:33
How it ranked: Fastest run split by 84 seconds

34:16
Raced at: 2014 ITU WTS Auckland (April 6, 2014)
Finish: 12th place in a time of 2:10:39
How it ranked: Fastest run split by 63 seconds

31:41
Raced at: 2013 ITU WTS Stockholm (Aug. 24, 2013)
Finish: 1st place in a time of 1:55:31
How it ranked: Fastest run split by 45 seconds

34:36
Raced at: 2013 ITU WTS Madrid (June 1, 2013)
Finish: 4th place in a time of 2:05:44
How it ranked: Second fastest run split

32:44
Raced at: 2013 ITU WTS Yokohama (May 11, 2013)
Finish: 1st place in a time of 1:57:05
How it ranked: Fastest run split by 16 seconds

33:10
Raced at: 2013 ITU WTS San Diego (April 19, 2013)
Finish: 1st place in a time of 1:59:59
How it ranked: Fastest run split by 10 seconds

34:10
Raced at: 2012 ITU WTS Grand Final Auckland (Oct. 20, 2012)
Finish: 2nd place in a time of 2:11:00
How it ranked: Fastest run split by 41 seconds

34:01
Raced at: 2012 ITU WTS Yokohama (Sep. 29, 2012)
Finish: 8th place in a time of 1:59:56
How it ranked: Eighth fastest run split

34:43
Raced at: 2012 London Olympic Games (Aug. 4, 2012)
Finish: 38th in a time of 2:06:34
How it ranked: 10th fastest run split

34:29
Raced at: 2012 ITU WTS Kitzbuehel (June 23, 2012)
Finish: 11th in a time of 2:06:42
How it ranked: Tied for fastest run split

37:19
Raced at: 2012 ITU WTS San Diego (May 11, 2012)
Finish: 51st in a time of 2:06:35
How it ranked: 44th fastest run split

34:56
Raced at: 2012 ITU WTS Sydney (April 14, 2012)
Finish: 4th in a time of 2:02:12
How it ranked: Fourth fastest run split

33:43
Raced at: 2011 ITU WTS London (Aug. 7, 2011)
Finish: 2nd in a time of 2:00:41
How it ranked: Fastest run split by 5 seconds

RELATED PHOTOS: Gwen Jorgensen Back On Top In Yokohama

FILED UNDER: Race Coverage TAGS:

Bethany Mavis

Bethany Mavis

Bethany Mavis is the associate editor for Triathlete and Inside Triathlon magazines. She received her B.A. in journalism from Point Loma Nazarene University and is a multiple half-marathon finisher.

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