Brownlee fourth as Mola wins in Edmonton

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Mario Mola (centre) also beat Jacob Birtwhistle (left) in Hamburg this month

Great Britain’s Jonny Brownlee finished fourth as Spain’s Mario Mola stretched his lead in the World Triathlon Series with victory in Edmonton.

Australian Jacob Birtwhistle, who had to jump a barrier after wrongly running down the finishing straight as he led on the penultimate lap, was second.

Mola won in 54 minutes 52 seconds, with South African Richard Murray third.

Bermuda’s Flora Duffy, 29, claimed her fourth straight win to dislodge Katie Zaferes at the top of the standings.

Zaferes, 28, finished third, with fellow American Taylor Knibb, 19, second.

Duffy leads the standings on 3200 points, with Zaferes eight points behind and American Kirsten Kasper third on 2,677.

The sprint-distance races consisted of a 750m swim, 20km cycle and 5km run.

Olympic silver and bronze medallist Brownlee, 27, was distanced during the run and finished 23 seconds behind Mola, while fellow Briton Grant Sheldon was 10th.

Victory was a fourth of the season for defending champion Mola, 27, who tops the rankings on 3,664 points, followed by compatriots Fernando Alarza on 3,172 and Javier Gomez on 2,990.

“Things couldn’t have gone better today,” said Mola.

Birtwhistle, 22, said: “I hurdled that barrier and I had to suffer for another lap. I had to dig really deep.”

Three of the nine races remain this season. Montreal and Stockholm hosts races next month, with 800 points awarded to the winner of each.

The WTS Grand Final takes place in Rotterdam in September, with 1,200 points for the winner.

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