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Wed 16th Oct 2019
© David Pearce /
Jan Frodeno wins Ironman World Champs
Posted by: John Levison
Posted on: Sunday 11th October 2015

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Race favourite Jan Frodeno takes 2015 Ironman World Championship victory

The 2008 Olympic Champion completes the calendar double of Ironman and Ironman 70.3 World titles

The single loop, 2.4mile sea swim from Dig Me Beach saw a leading trio of Dylan McNeice (NZL), Jan Frodeno (GER) and Andy Potts (USA) emerge from the Pacific Ocean together. The Kiwi, McNeice, made the exit stairs first in order to take the swim plaudits today with a 50:45 swim split.

90 seconds back, a huge group of 30 athletes headed by Nils Frommhold (GER) came out of the ocean separated by just 23 seconds. That group included the Brits Fraser Cartmell, David McNamee and Tim Don. The big news for the race was that 2014 winner Sebastian Kienle was also part of that huge chase group, by far his best position at this stage in Kona. The fourth of the British Pro’s, Joe Skipper, was 50th at this point and off the front pack pace with a 57:31 split, leaving him plenty of work to do on dry land.

The 2015 season has seen a whole host of fast bike times recorded in Ironman races around the world, with sub 4:12 splits being recorded many more times this year than in all previous years combined. Is ‘uber biker’ the new #normal? Well, in 2014 two Male Pro’s recorded sub 4:30 bike splits in Kona. This time around, that number was 13. As a result, a major ‘front pack explosion’ and massive time gaps at T2 were not on the menu today. Germany’s race favourite, Jan Frodeno was first to dismount, followed by Timothy O’Donnell (USA), Sebastian Kienle (GER), Eneko Llanos (ESP), Frederik Van Lierde (BEL), Brent McMahon (CAN), Ben Hoffman (USA), Andi Boecherer (GER), Tyler Butterfield (BER) and Maik Twelsiek (GER) – with just four minutes separating that top-10.

Joe Skipper needed to go well on the bike after his swim, and he did, a 4:28:34 bike split meaning he gained 35 places to come off the bike in 15th as the first Brit. Tim Don arrived about five minutes later, his ride impacted by a five minute penalty.

Considered the best runner in the field – and already winner of the Ironman European Championships and Ironman 70.3 World Championships in 2015 – Jan Frodeno, started the run alone, surely the race was his? Frodeno was never headed… but it certainly wasn’t easy. American Tim O’Donnell who pushed the pace during the bike was also running well on a hot day. While Frodeno appeared to going for the ‘how many large bottles of water can your pour over yourself’ record, whenever he extended his lead, O’Donnell would reduce the deficit. From the chasers behind another German with pedigree in Kona was making a move in the shape of Andreas Raelert.

As Raelert made his move towards the leading duo, Frodeno managed to hold and then extend his small margin over his chasers to cross the line an exceptionally happy man, becoming the first athlete to win both the Olympic Games and Ironman World Championships. That left Andreas to close in on Timothy, and he made the pass at almost exactly the same spot that he caught (but could not pass), Chris McCormack in the 2010 Championships. This time around he won that battle, while O’Donnell came home to his best ever Kona performance and first time on the podium.

David McNamee had a fantastic run (2:49:52) to be the first Brit in 11th, with Joe Skipper (13th) and Tim Don (15th) making it three Brits in the top-15. I’m fairly certain that has never happened in the men’s race in Kona before.

More from Kona tomorrow…

Ironman World Championship, Saturday 10th October 2015
2.4miles / 112 miles / 26.2miles - Kona, Hawaii

Pos Men
1st Jan Frodeno (GER) 8:14:40
2nd Andreas Raelert (GER) 8:17:43
3rd Timothy O’Donnell (USA) 8:18:50
4th Andy Potts (USA) 8:21:25
5th Tyler Butterfield (BER) 8:23:09
6th Cyril Viennot (FRA) 8:25:05
7th Eneko Llanos (ESP) 8:28:10
8th Sebastian Kienle (GER) 8:29:43
9th Brent McMahon (CAN) 8:30:13
10th Boris Stein (GER) 8:31:43
11th David McNamee (GBR) 8:32:27
12th Ivan Rana (ESP) 8:34:27
13th Joe Skipper (GBR) 8:36:02
14th Lionel Sanders (CAN) 8:36:26
15th Tim Don (GBR) 8:39:05

#GBKONA 2015 Coverage

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