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Alonso McKernan takes tough Ironman Barcelona victory
Posted by: John Levison
Posted on: Sunday 5th October 2014


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The debut edition of Ironman Barcelona in Calella – the first running of the event previously held under the colours of Challenge Barcelona, produced a superb men’s race, with two home athletes having the Spanish edition of ‘iron war’, both finishing just seconds apart after eight hours of racing.

The day started with a large group of 10 athletes emerging from the swim with just 22 seconds from first to 10th. Clemente Alonso McKernan headed the group in 49:22, which also included Alberto Casadei (ITA), Horst Reichal (GER), Kent Horner (RSA), Bas Diederan (NED), Konstantin Bachor (GER), Miquel Blanchert (ESP), Andreas Niedrig (GER), Mark Oude Bennink (NED) and Andrey Lyatskiy (RUS)

The initiative on the bike would be taken by Bachor. Third overall last year, he would record a 4:19:40 cycle to reach T2 solo, and clear of his chasers by more than five minutes. That chase group was reduced to five – McKernan, Niedrig, Blanchart, Casadei and Diederen. Hoping to set a fast time today, Great Britain’s Challenge Weymouth winner Joe Skipper was 20 minutes behind Bachor at T2, and just outside the top 20 – he would need a superb run if he was to get back into contention.

On the run, Bachor was running well – but the trio of McKernan, Blanchart and Diederen were slowly closing the gap, with very few seconds between them as the hunted down the leader. With less than 10 miles to go, the top four were covered by just 27 seconds. This was going to be a tough finish. The big Dutchman, Diederen would be the first to fade slightly as the two Spanish athletes looked to overcome the German bike escapee.

Alonso McKernan and Blanchart continued to trade the lead in the final stages, and the winner was unclear until the very final kilometers, when Alonso McKernan was able to pull away just a few yards from his countryman (who also finished fourth at Ironman Mallorca a week ago – running a 2:47:30 there!). Both would cross the line under the previous best time on the course – with marathon times of 2:46:15 and 2:46:37 respectively. Bachor, Casadei and Diederen took position three thru to fifth(all running under three hours). Both also finished faster the 2013 winning time and course record of Sergio Marques

Joe Skipper** produced a super 2:47:32 to move up around 15 places – and pick up EUR 1,500 in prize money.

** To be confirmed, but we understand Joe’s race may have also been impacted by a puncture and a wheel change – making his finish even more impressive.

Ironman Barcelona, Sunday 5th October 2014


2.4miles / 112 miles / 26.2miles

Pos Men
1st Clemente Alonso McKernan (ESP) 8:04:13
2nd Miquel Blanchart (ESP) 8:04:38
3rd Konstantin Bachor (GER) 8:09:42
4th Alberto Casadei (ITA) 8:10:49
5th Bas Diederen (NED) 8:11:26
6th Joe Skipper (GBR) 8:20:39

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