Ironman World Champion Lucy Charles-Barclay has hailed the T100 Triathlon World Tour as the future of the sport.

The 29-year-old is one of just of 40 athletes set to take part in the highly-anticipated T100 World Series, a product of the Professional Triathletes Organisation.

A rebranding of the PTO Tour, the T100 is a brand-new eight race format across the calendar year culminating in a thrilling grand final to crown the World Champion of long-distance triathlon.

And Charles-Barclay expects a melting pot of Olympic distance and Ironman athletes to set the new event alight.

“Bringing the short-course and long-distance athletes together is exactly what this sport needs," she said.

“The future of triathlon is in this series. It’s the best of the best competing against each other at that distance that’s slap-bang in the middle.

“The competition is just going to go from strength to strength, we’ve already seen it in some of the PTO races already.

“And having the same athletes going back-to-back for eight races in a season is going to help us learn and improve.

“It also allows us to bring in new fans that don’t know much about the sport because they’ll get to follow the narratives and get to know us.”

The T100 will include a series of eight races across the season in different venues all around the world, including Singapore, Las Vegas and London.

Charles-Barclay admitted that she will be leaning on her past memories of competing in Victoria Docks as an open water swimmer and a roaring home crowd to give her an edge in London.

“My favourite course will have to be London,” she said.

“It’s a home race really, I live and train just 20 minutes from Victoria Dock now and I have raced in these docks before as well when I was a swimmer.

“I don’t think that will give me an advantage on the day but the home crowd might give me a bit of an edge."

As the reigning Ironman World Champion, Charles-Barclay will bring a wealth of endurance experience to the T100 tour this season.

And as one of the small pool of athletes on the roster, the self-proclaimed ‘mermaid’ revealed that her season focus is wholly on the tour, with ambitions to be on the starting line for all eight races.

“Since I’ve starting racing triathlon I’ve wanted to race the best athletes and the T100 Series does that,” she said.

“You’ve got the top 20 athletes for male and female racing each time which will instantly show you where you need to improve to go up the rankings in each race which helps you become a better athlete.

“The Ironman Word Champs in Nice currently aren’t on my plan because I think I would have to dedicate a lot of time to it and I’m super excited about this series so am going all in.

“Triathlon is going from strength to strength each year and I think this series will just see it catapult even further and the talent will go to the next level.”