Olympic champion Alistair Brownlee will make his return from injury in Saturday’s World Series triathlon race in Yokohama, Japan on Saturday.
And it means the Bramhope ace will go head to head with defending world champion and World Series leader Javier Gomez and his brother Jonny.
In the last 20 times that Gomez and Brownlee have met at WTS races, Alistair has won on 15 of those occasions.
But that was then and this is now. Gomez is not waiting to make a move in the rankings, having destroyed the competition, including younger Brownlee brother Jonathan, in the last two WTS events.
But Alistair presents a different challenge for Gomez. He proved last year in San Diego when he charged away from the competition for the win that missing the first few races of the season has no impact on his ability to take top spot.
But what Jonathan and Gomez have that Alistair doesn’t is experience racing in Yokohama. This Saturday will mark the first time the London Olympic gold medallist competes on the course, which could fuel his motivation but may also work against him.
Jonathan, however, started his 2013 season with a bang in Yokohama, trudging through a wet and muddy course for the top spot ahead of Gomez.
And while Gomez has raced in three of the last four Yokohama events, he has yet to win in the Japanese city.