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Busy weekend for British Ironman Pro's
Posted by: John Levison
Posted on: Thursday 15th August 2013


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A busy weekend of Ironman racing ahead includes several British athletes racing who will have hopes, and in some cases expectations, of podium success and/or Ironman World Championship qualification in their last chance to gain Kona Pro Ranking (KPR) points ahead of the 2013 cutoff. Sunday 25th August is actually the final chance to gain points, though we imagine none of those mentioned below will be racing again next week after an Ironman race this weekend.

Ironman Mont-Tremblant, Canada

In points and prize money terms, Mont-Tremblant is the biggest event of the weekend carrying with it North America Championship status. That puts it on a par with Ironman Melbourne (Asia Pacific) and Ironman Frankfurt (Europe) as one of the three continental 'championship' events of the season, second only to the Ironman World Championships in Kona. A late August time slot means that the start lists can't match those of Melbourne and Frankfurt in depth terms, but with a $125,000 prize purse ($25,000 to the race winners), along with P-4000 status, still quality lining up for both points and prizes...

Race favourite for the women will certainly be Mary Beth Ellis. Since setting the fastest debut Ironman time ever at Ironman Austria 2011, Beth Ellis has built a staggering record in just three seasons. Three Ironman wins in 2011 (Austria, Regensburg and Canada), another three in 2012 (Texas, New York and Cozumel), and another already in 2013 (France) mean that Beth Ellis remains with an 'unbeaten outside of Kona' Ironman record.

Technically at least, Great Britain's Liz Blatchford also has that record - one race, one win at Ironman Cairns. Currently sitting just outside the Kona qualifying positions in 40th (3930 points), Blatchford will need a few more points to secure a Kona start this year and is certainly more than capable of that.

Dan Halksworth has made a swift turnaround from his second Ironman UK win and headed to Canada in search of Kona qualification. Currently well down in the KPR standings (94th, 2020 points), the high (and deep) points on offer at Mont Tremblant offer him the chance to jump right up into the mix with a strong race. He'll be full of confidence after strong races at the London Triathlon and Ironman UK - the outstanding question is will he be sufficiently recovered from his efforts in Bolton?

Like Dan, Paul Amey is an Ironman winner this year (Texas), and is in a very similar position on the KPR too (92nd, 2075 points currently).

Winner of the 2012 debut event, Romain Guillaume (FRA) races, as do Viktor Zyemtsev (UKR), Clemente Alonso-McKernan (ESP) and Aussies Luke Bell and Paul Ambrose. That to me looks like a very open men's race with no standout favourite (and several more who will feel comfortable in that company), which should be a huge motivating factor to those racing. Game on.

Full listing HERE

Ironman Kalmar, Sweden

Jodie Swallow races and wears bib #51 (the number with the most Tour de France wins...), and will start as the clear favourite. Swallow secured a painful second place at Ironman South Africa and then a much improved second place at Ironman Frankfurt. A continuation of that form line and development over the Ironman distance should see her cross the line first at an event we were very impressed with last year. Eva Nyström (who we featured HERE) will have home support on her side, and will hope to repeat a Swedish victory achieved last season by Äsa Lunström.

Ironman Kalmar

For the British men, Paul Hawkins is listed, though he won't be racing (check out his latest blog for more on that), along with Steve Osbourne and Martin Cain. Much like the men's race in Mont-Tremblant, it's another open event and difficult to predict a winner in Kalmar.

Full listing HERE

KMD Ironman Copenhagen, Denmark

The former Challenge Copenhagen, now Ironman Copenhagen (review the history of that HERE) has its first running under M-Dot colours this weekend. Falling on the same weekend as Ironman Kalmar, a relatively short drive away, will likely add a few headaches to the Ironman Europe organising team - I suspect we might see the events on different weekend in future years.

The solbe British Pro entrant in Chris Goodfellow. Chris has good experience at this event under the Challenge umbrella, and reported on his 8th position / 8:47:06 finish last year for us HERE. Chris won the Forestman this year before being 'broken like never before' at Challenge Roth, so will be looking to bounce back this weekend.

Full listing HERE

Chris Goodfellow


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