Over the weekend I watched the Rayong ITU Asian Cup event in Thailand. It was great to see athletes of all abilities attending, some of whom had never raced at this level before. It was also sad knowing other athletes could have benefited greatly from the opportunity but were not afforded one, even on a self-funded basis. In my opinion its essential to get athletes into these types of event as early as the ITU permits especially if the athlete is dominant in their local events or in the case of many, do not have a competitive race series at home at all.
Within an athletes first year of racing (assuming they have progressed correctly), I recommend doing at least 6 sprint distance events. In an ideal world, I would choose two at their current fitness level so they are competitive, 2 below their level so they excel, and 2 above their level so they get beaten. This is advantageous for several reasons
I hope National federations in Asia strive to put their athletes development first and politics second. Come up with fair selection criteria and make the criteria available for all to see. At the end of the day anyone doing well will be representing their country, and the system/governance in place will be credited for the result.