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Tue 21st Aug 2018
Mirinda Carfrae completes Aussie double at Ironman World Championships
Posted by: Editor
Posted on: Sunday 10th October 2010

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Another year, another great story - and not the one we were expecting to write at 5pm yesterday evening, UK time!

The race took on a totally different complexion just minutes before the race start with the announcement that the overwhelming race favourite, and three-time defending champion Chrissie Wellington was unable to start due to illness. A crushing blow for Chrissie, and indeed for the sport as a whole where she is arguably the biggest superstar name we have. But, it certainly opened the women's race up... and delivered a performance worthy of a World Champion, despite the shadow cast by the missing icon.

For many, Julie Dibens was expected to lead out of the swim, and then really put the hammer down on the bike and lead in to T2 - whether Chrissie was there or not. Julie swam well - but it was actually last year's surprise sixth place finisher, and fellow Brit Rachel Joyce who set the pace in the water, exiting in 52:25, 1:25 ahead of Dibens. Behind Dibens, Mirinda Carfrae, Caroline Steffen, Leanda Cave and Amy Marsh were among those just two minutes behind Dibens - for Carfrae in particular, that was a great start to the day.

It wasn't long before Dibens caught and passed Joyce to take the lead, with Swiss athlete Caroline Stefen from TeamTBB in second place. Both broke five hours over the 112 miles (4:55:27 / 4:59:22 respectively), which meant that Dibens would arrive at T2 with a lead of 6:07 on Steffen, 9:14 on Amy Marsh and 11:34 over the fleet-footed Mirinda Carfrae - who was second last year in her first ever Ironman.

Dibens didn't manage the fastest ride of the day however, as Switzerland's Karin Thuerig - a former world TT champion - set, subject to conformation, a new Kona bike course record of 4:48:22. Unfortunately for Thuerig, she had to add that to a swim time almost 20 minutes slower than Dibens, and hence it wasn't going to put her into contention.

The Brits had four in the top-12 at T2, with Rachel Joyce sixth, Leanda Cave seventh and Cat Morrison eleventh.

So now the question was - would the 2009 course record run speed of Mirinda Carfrae be enough to close on the multi-talented Julie Dibens? I guess a Kona run course record of 2:53:32 answers that one...

A stunning run from Carfrae - combined with improved swim and bike performances - would bring her home under nine hours, only the fourth time that has ever been done in Kona. Check out the full history of Sub-9 ironman events.

Carolie Steffen - perhaps the most improved athlete of 2010 - ran a super strong 3:05:47 to pass Dibens too, who held firm to take the third place podium spot. After Sarah Coope (1991) and Chrissie (three time winner), only the third Brit to make the top three at Kona.

Rachel Joyce had one of the smiles of the day, moving up a place from 2009 to take fifth in 9:18:48 - something I'm sure she would have thought impossible from her hospital bed with three severed tendons in Abu Dhabi in March. Without doubt, Rachel Joyce is the real deal, and surely even better things lie ahead with an injury free preparation.

The British ladies completed three top-10 finishes through Leanda Cave, who did her 'Blazaeman roll' across the finish to round out the top-10.

More updates soon...

Pos Women
1st Mirinda Carfrae (AUS) 8:58:36
2nd Caroline Steffen (SUI) 9:06:00
3rd Julie Dibens (GBR) 9:10:04
4th Virgina Berasategui (ESP) 9:16:47
5th Rachel Joyce (GBR) 9:18:48
6th Karin Theurig (SUI) 9:22:48
7th Yvonne Van Vlerken (NED) 9:23:33
8th Caitlin Snow (USA) 9:26:42
9th Heleen Bij De Vaate (NED) 9:27:02
10th Leanda Cave (GBR) 9:27:42

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