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Kienle, Hauschildt on top in Frankfurt
Posted by: John Levison
Posted on: Monday 4th July 2016


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Hauschildt and Kienle take the titles in Frankfurt

Fastest run split for Will Clarke earns him fifth place in Germany

The 2014 IRONMAN World Champion Sebastian Kienle came out on top in what was a spectacular battle of the home favourites with Andi Boecherer at the 15th anniversary IRONMAN European Championship in Frankfurt on Sunday. Australia's former two-time Ironman 70.3 World Champion Melissa Hauschildt continued her unbeaten streak at the iron-distance to take the women's title as race favourite Daniela Ryf withdraws early in the bike leg.

MEN

The non-wetsuit (for Pro's) swim spread the field out, with Estonia's Marko Albert leading out a long line of swimmers which included Boecherer. In his weakest discipline, Kienle was four minutes off the pace, as (unusually), was Great Britain's Will Calrke after "a career worst swim". Fortunutely for Will, his day would get much better...

The Kienle express was launched once on two wheels, always a sight to see, and by early into lap two he was in a leading trio with Boecherer and the former winner in Frankfurt, Eneko Llanos (ESP). That trio would reach T2 together, with Kienle having set a race best bike split of 4:12:12 in the process. The damage had been done behind - Albert came in fourth (+5:41) with Clark 10th (+23.55), along with Kona podium finisher last year, Tim O'Donnell (USA).

That pace on the bike didn't seem to impact the German duo, who would produce stunning efforts of 2:44:12 and 2:45:02 respectively to finish less than one minute apart, both smashing the eight-hour mark in the process. A three hour marathon would prove enough for Llanos to complete the podium, while Will Clarke had clearly packed his running legs, finishing his race with a best of the day 2:42:08 which brought him up to fifth place overall.

WOMEN

Pre-race, Daniela Ryf (SUI) wasn't just the favourite - she was the athlete everyone expected to win. The reigning Ironman and Ironman 70.3 champion has crushed pretty much everything in her path for the last two seasons, and when she headed out the non-wetsuit swim in 53:45, there was little sign that anything was going to change this time around.

Despite the warmth of the water (note - age-groupers did wear wetsuits), the surrounding temperatures weren't so warm, and Ryf struggled from early in the bike to keep warm, and very early on in the bike she called it a day.

With Ryf out, it would become an (almost) all-German affair at the front, with Natascha Schmitt reaching T2 first, with Daniela Saemmler (+5:11), Hauschildt (+6:32), Verena Walter (+8:09) and Astrid Steinen (+11:19), completing the top five.

With her Elite running background, the Aussie was making up consistent time through the run and by the halfway point had taken over the lead. She would finish up with a 3:00:12 marathon to take the title, while behind the fastest time of the day would go to another German athlete, Katja Konschak (2:59:29), to run through to second place. Third/fourth/fifth would be Saemmler, Schmitt and Walter respectively.

Great Britain's Caroline Livesey has been very busy lately, probably much more than she would choose, in an attempt to gainn the required Kona qualifying points, and she finished 12th after a very tough day.

Mainova IRONMAN European Championships, Frankfurt - Sunday 3rd July 2016
3.8km / 180km / 42.2km

Women

1st - Melissa Hauschildt (AUS) - 9:01:17
2nd - Katja Konschak (GER) - 9:09:58
3rd - Daniela Saemmler (GER) - 9:13:23
4th - Natascha Schmitt (GER) - 9:16:40
5th - Verena Walter (GER) - 9:18:58

12th - Caroline Livesey (GBR) - 10:00:24

Men

1st - Sebastian Kienle (GER) - 7:52:43
2nd - Andi Boecherer (GER) - 7:53:40
3rd - Eneko Llanos (ESP) - 8:09:08
4th - Marko Albert (EST) - 8:11:38
5th - Will Clarke (GBR) - 8:14:56

20th - Hywel Davies (GBR) - 9:05:54


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