This Sunday an IRONMAN distance classic was played where the Spaniards usually make their long distance debut: the IRONMAN South Africa. On this occasion we had 5 representatives Eneko Plains * , Gustavo Rodríguez, Gurutze Frades, Eneko Elosegui y Víctor Arroyo . The test awarded 2 Slots in each category for the Kona World Championship.
Regarding the PROS of the test, last year's winners were at the starting line Kyle Buckingham and Lucy Charles in addition to Ben Hoffman, Josh Amberger, Bart Aernouts *, David McNamee * y Tim Don among others in the male category and Angela Naeth ,Anja Ippach in females.
* Classifieds for IMKona 2019
The test began at 6:30 Spanish time, with the 1,6 km swimming (cut due to bad weather) where the first to get out of the water was Josh Amberger followed by 32 seconds by Tim Don and 41 by a group of 10 very stretched units where Eneko Llanos started in tenth place 56 seconds from the head of the race. Gustavo Rodríguez left the 20th at 3:30. We regret to say that in this segment two triathletes have died this morning
In the first kilometers of the cycling sector, a triathlete was formed in the lead of 9 in just 17 seconds passing by km 30 with Maurice Clavel in the lead, the rest of the triathletes were Ben Hoffman, Josh Amberger, Nils Frommhold, Tim Don, Kyle Bckingham, Guilio Molinari and Eneko Llanos.
The group, although it was more or less together, was stretching and, after half the route (90km), Ben Hoffman could be seen as the leader along with Josh Amberger, 20 seconds later the group led by Frommhold where Eneko Llanos was ninth.
In the last part of the cycling segment, Ben Hoffman left alone, reaching T2 with a 1:30 advantage over the group of Amberger, Frommhold, Bckingham and Bckingham. Eneko Llanos reached T2 3:43 behind in sixth position. Gustavo Rodríguez was 10th and Víctor Arroyo was 20th.
In the 42-kilometer marathon, the North American was strong, keeping up with the pace of the group that was trying to hunt him down, where they cut him a few seconds and finally, starting at kilometer 15, increased his advantage again, passing the half-marathon with a 2:03 advantage over Nils Frommhold and 3:32 on Andreas Dreitz who reached the third position. At that point Eneko was seventh standing less than 4 minutes from the podium positions.
At the pass for kilometer 30, Ben Hoffman had an advantage of 3: 35 on Frommhold and marched with strong pace to get the victory in the test with a time of 7: 34: 20 followed by Nils Frommhold (7: 40: 13) and Michael Weiss (7: 42: 36). After an excellent run on foot where he was cutting time, Eneko Llanos (7:45:00) came in fourth position.
Female test (in progress)
In the women's event in the water there were no surprises and Lucy Charles came out in first position with an 8 second advantage over Lauren Brandon. Anna Ippacht was third but already 4:19 from the head of the race. Gurutze Frades was eighth at 7:30.
In the cycling sector the duet of Charles and Brandon remained in the lead, although behind Lppacht little by little it was cutting distances, passing through the checkpoint of the 50 km at 2:49. Guru was still with options and was seventh 10 minutes ahead of the race. In passing through km 90, the difference was reduced to 2 minutes and the trio were increasingly distancing themselves from the chasing group of 3 units to 13 minutes with Anna Watkinson, Mareen Hufe and Guru who passed in sixth position but with the same time .
From this point Lppacht with a great rhythm on the bicycle was increasing its advantage to arrive with 3: 15 of advantage over Brandon and Charles to the T2. Gurutze got off his fifth bicycle.
In the race on foot, the British Lucy Charles was unrivaled, and with an exemplary marathon she went up positions to reach the lead at kilometer 10 of the sector and from there leave alone to win.
Finally Lucy Charles He took the victory with a time of 08:35:32 revalidating the title won last year.
Gurutze Frades She was very solid throughout the test, going up positions to reach fourth place in the first meters of the marathon, going forward to the third classified Lauren Brandon, where she was cutting time little by little to reach her on kilometer 23 of the race and leave again to secure second place and get the pass for the World Championship in Kona.
Finally Gurutze Frades, he finished the test in second position and with a marathon at 2:52:40 to reach the finish line at 08:40:48 which means that he has achieved the classification for Kona in which it will be his fourth participation (2016,2017 and 2018). The third classified was Annath Watkinson (08:43:19)
It has also been his best position in this test since he had been fifth in 2017 and sixth in 2018.