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Wellington and Tissink smash records in South Africa
Posted by: John Levison
Posted on: Sunday 10th April 2011


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Scorcher, in every respect.

The 2011 Spec Savers Ironman South Africa deserves a full report. Or reports. And they will follow shortly once I've got my breath back.

Just how do you deal with the pressure and expectation of being the single most recognised name in the sport, with record-breaking performances expected every time you set foot on a race course? I don't know, but I suggest you ask Chrissie Wellington as she is doing a rather good job addressing that very issue.

Rachel Joyce broke the course record in Port Elizabeth today by seven minutes. Unfortunately for her, Chrissie had arrived at the line almost 35 minutes earlier, and in doing so set yet another Ironman (M-Dot) world best of 8:33:56, surpassing the 8:36:13 she set at Ironman Arizona in November last year. Eigth overall, fastest run split (2:52:54) overall, and the unbeaten iron-distance streak reaches 11. A stunning day, and I was proud to see it. Also a one-two for the University of Birmingham Alumni.

More statistics for your Editor to update. Magic stuff!

Rachel Joyce and Chrissie Wellington

In contrast, the men's race was a close run affair all day long, with the lead changing hands regulalry. And just when you though favourite Marino Vanhoenacker has made the break, no, he eventually withdrew at 26km, and it was defending champion and home town hero Raynard Tissink who smashed his way to a course record to hold off a super strong Andreas Bocherer (GER).

Raynard Tissink

Pos Men Women
1st Raynard Tissink (RSA) 8:05:36 Chrissie Wellington (GBR) 8:33:56
2nd Andreas Bocherer (GER) 8:08:36 Rachel Joyce (GBR) 9:08:23
3rd James Cunnama (RSA) 8:13:18 Diana Riesler (GER) 9:20:37

Other top British performances from Yvette Grice (10th , 9:59:28), Toby Radcliffe (13th, 9:01:17) and Craig Twigg (16th, 9:10:01)


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