Smashed records at Ironman Austria with Miranda Carfrae (AUS) and Marino Vanhoenacker (BEL).
On the men’s side, Thiago Vinhal (BRA) was first out of the water in 52:34, which was remarkably slow compared to previous years. Race favorite Vanhoenacker (who has won Austria seven times), came out in third only four seconds behind the leader. A strong group of three riders immediately began gapping the rest of the field, and by the 90km mark, they had five minutes on the field. Vanhoenacker patiently waited to make a move, and finally with 30 km to go he went for it, putting five minutes on his chasers by the time he hit T2. With the fastest bike split by over ten minutes, Vanhoenacker was able to hold off a charging duo of Victor Zyemtsev (UKR) and Alessandro Degasperi (ITA) to take the win in a record time of 8:04:18.
For the women, Carfrae (the race favorite) began with a solid swim, only having to make up a few km’s to catch the leaders. After only 20km she began riding through the field, and eventually posted the race-fastest bike, a much needed confident booster after a disappointing race last year in Kona. After such a strong bike, spectators weren’t sure she could pull off the usual super-woman type run split she usually does, but Carfrae was full of surprises that day. Running the first half in 1:23, she posted one of the fastest marathons in history, along with setting an Austria course record. Michaela Herlbauer (AUT) finished second in, with Elisabeth Gruber (AUT) rounding out the podium in 9:17:20.
Ironman 70.3 Coeur d’Alene
With nearly perfect conditions, Andy Potts (USA) and Heather Jackson (USA) comfortably walk away with wins at the inaugural Ironman 70.3 Coeur d’Alene.
The women’s race began with some serious gaps, with Haley Chura (USA) exiting the water three and a half minutes in front of race-favorite Heather Jackson. By mile twenty though, Jackson had already taken the lead and proceeded to ride away from the field. Her closest rival Ellie Salthouse (AUS) had lost over six minutes by the time they hit the run, which Jackson stretched out to eight by the end of the 70.3-mile race with a 4:19:34 finishing time. Malindi Elmore (CAN) rounded out the podium with a women’s-best run split (1:20:50).
On the men’s side, Josh Amberger (AUS) and Andy Potts (USA) came out of the water first, with 30 seconds on Christian Kemp (AUS), Mark Bowstead (NZL), and Luke Bell (AUS). Potts, Amberger, and Bowstead, feeling strong, pulled away from the field on the bike, with Amberger starting the run a few seconds in front of Bowstead and Potts. By the time the first half of the run had gone by, Potts moved to the front, and held over a minute lead on his pursuers. In the end it was Potts who took the win in 3:54:45, followed by Amberger (3:56:49) and Bowstead (3:57:16).
Ironman 70.3 Mont Tremblant
Holly Lawrence (GBR) takes the win at 70.3 Mont Tremblant while Lionel Sanders (CAN) grabs his fifth 70.3 title of the season.
Antoine Jolicoeur Desroches (CAN), Barrett Brandon (USA), Jarrod Shoemaker (USA), and Paul Mathews (AUS) all exited the water within seconds of each other, but everyone’s eyes were on the race favorite Lionel Sanders (CAN) who came out of the water almost three and a half minutes down. By mile 25, Sanders had caught the leaders and then opened up nearly a five-minute gap on the field by the time he hit T2. Along with a race-best bike split, Sanders also ran away with a race-best run split to take the win by almost five minutes (3:47:31). Seeming to be a runner’s day, the top three run splits also just happened to be the podium, with Trevor Wurtele (CAN) taking second and Chris Leiferman (USA) taking third.
For the women, Lauren Brandon (USA) exited the water in first, 30 second ahead of Lawrence, and Merdith Kessler (USA). On the bike though, Lawrence really showed her prowess by out-biking her closest competitor by six minutes, with 7:35 on Wurtele and 10:27 on Kessler. On the run, Lawrence continued to distance herself from the field, finishing in 4:08:53 (almost 10 minutes on second). Wurtele hung on for second in 4:17:08 while Lauren Barnett (USA) grabbed herself a third place finish.
Ruban Ruzafa (ESP) and Michelle Flipo (FRA) take the titles at Xterra Switzerland.
With mud-filled trails, it was the mountain bikers that had a serious advantage at Xterra Switzerland. Being a professional mountain biker for years, Ruzafa pulled away with the win over two and a half minutes ahead of second place.
On the women’s side, Renata Bucher (SUI) dominated on the bike, but was caught by the quick run of Flipo who came away with the win. The mud-sprayed chasers had an exciting finish though, with second through fourth place only being separated by four seconds.
Xterra Mine over Matter
Karsten Madsen (CAN) and Suzie Snyder (USA) took the elite titles at the XTERRA Mine over Matter in Milton, Ohio.
Madsen was having a great day from the start, posting the fastest swim and bike splits that put him three minutes ahead of Branden Rakita entering T2. By the end of the run, Madsen had put nearly 5 minutes on runner-up Chris Ganter.
In her first-ever XTERRA race Joanna Brown (CAN) took the early lead with the fastest swim but Snyder quickly took over on the mountain bike, posting the fastest bike split and crossing the line two-minutes in front of Brown. Maia Ignatz (USA) rounded out the podium in third, her second top three finish of the season.
USAT Duathlon National Championship
This year’s Duathlon National Championship took place in Bend, Oregon where local Matt Lieto and Alycia Hill (Salt Lake City, Utah) took the titles. The day’s events began with the elites on the standard 10-km run, 40-km bike, 5-k, run course, where Lieto posted the day’s fastest time of 1:58:48 with Hill winning her first ever duathlon with a finishing time of 2:13:49.