WATCH: Olympics Botch Triathlon Start as Boat Gets in Way of Competitors

by Quentin Blount

The Olympics triathlon had to undergo a restart after a boat got in the way of the athletes who were attempting to dive into the water.

There were roughly 56 competitors who dove into Tokyo Bay for the first leg of the triathlon’s swim. However, little did they know that a TV boat was sitting directly in their path. The entire thing led to a hectic and dangerous situation — one that the Olympics has never seen before.

“I have never seen anything like that before at the start of a triathlon — let alone one at the Olympics,” one of the announcers said. “What a shambles.”

Officials on jet skis actually had to drive over to track down some of the swimmers who didn’t know what was happening. Thankfully, no one was hurt in the bizarre incident. After the boat had relocated and everyone was called back, the triathletes were able to finally get the start of the race underway about ten minutes later.

But with so many eyes on the Olympics, the botched start to the triathlon has already begun to make its rounds on social media. Reporter Timothy Burke shared a video of the incident to his official Twitter account.

“Start of Olympic triathlon completely botched,” Burke wrote alongside the clip.

Fans on Social Media React to the Restart of the Olympics Triathlon

As we mentioned above, it did not take long for the crazy video to start getting shared online. There were many fans who were split on who was at fault during the incident. At least one of them, though, credited the boat driver for spinning around at the last second to protect athletes from the boat’s engine.

“Good job of the boat driver to get the blades/screws out of the way tho,” one fan wrote.

However, other followers were quite as sold that the driver of the boat was innocent.

“Bad job of the boat driver to not get the rest of the boat out of the way tho,” another follower said back.

Meanwhile, other people on Twitter were questioning the official who called the start of the race. They wondered why the official called in when there was clearly still a huge boat sitting in the water in front of the event’s competitors.

“How did the official starter not see the 25-foot boat sitting there?” another person posed.

That question garnered a few responses of its own. But the top reply came in the form of a sports joke from one Twitter user. All of you hockey fans out there should get a kick out of it.

“He used to be an NHL referee,” the fan hilariously replied.

In the end, Norway’s Kristian Blummenfelt came out on top of the triathlon.