Ricochet News

2015 Standard Bank Ironman South Africa Recap (see our gallery)

2015 Standard Bank Ironman South Africa Recap (see our gallery)

After leading the swim, an uncharacteristically circumspect display on the bike and measured run saw Britain's Jodie Swallow, achieve an emotional victory at the Standard Bank IRONMAN African Championship. Earlier, Belgium’s Frederik Van Lierde put in a display which underlined his championship credentials as he slipped through the gears to get stronger as his race wore on, taking the title of IRONMAN African Champion in a world-class field.

Women’s Race

Setting the tone for the rest of the race, Swallow proved unstoppable in the swim, covering the first kilometre in just 12 minutes, quickly catching up to the back end of the men’s field. She completed the swim with a time of 00:50:16. Denmark’s Camilla Pedersen and Czech, Lucie Reed, followed a further two seconds back.

Taking her early lead into the bike, it was expected that Swallow would push hard in an attempt to put daylight between herself and the chasers. However, Pedersen stayed within distance and made up time. Eva Wutti sat comfortably in third position for the majority of the first lap, but was overtaken by Germany's Diana Riesler as they neared the 90 km mark.

However, neither were able to catch up to the leading pair. Pedersen closed the gap to less than a minute and remained close heading to transition. Swallow pulled away slightly and was able to take a two minute lead into T2. Pedersen and Riesler followed in second and third respectively.

Swallow continued to look strong early on in the run and started stretching her lead. While Pedersen held her own in the first lap, she was later overtaken by both Lucy Gossage and Susie Cheetham, who moved into second and third place. Having entered T2 in fourth and fifth, the pair put in a strong run with Gossage, in particular, trying to make an attempt to catch Swallow with 6 km remaining.

Gossage could not repeat her feat of a year ago (she overtook the former IRONMAN 70.3 world champion in the closing stages of the marathon in 2014) as Swallow comfortably held out to cross the finish line in 09:26:55 to claim probably the most significant full distance win of her career to date. Gossage finished six minutes later in second, with Cheetham a further 2 minutes back.

When asked on her thoughts on the race, an exhausted Swallow exclaimed, “[I am] very satisfied with my victory, but my body is completely numb now. It [definitely] feels as if I have just completed an IRONMAN.”

Top 10 Pro Women

1SWALLOW, Jodie AnnGBR0:50:175:20:583:10:569:26:56
2GOSSAGE, LucyGBR0:59:355:20:123:06:049:31:20
3CHEETHAM, SusieGBR0:57:525:25:543:03:389:33:02
4PEDERSEN, CamillaDEN0:52:445:20:083:17:239:35:25
5RIESLER, DianaDEU0:58:025:16:003:18:589:38:16
6WUTTI, EvaAUT0:59:235:20:443:15:249:40:22
7MARTIN, BrittaNZL0:59:055:31:133:09:479:45:33
8GANZOW, AstridDEU1:01:265:25:433:18:039:50:29
9SNOW, CaitlinUSA0:59:435:36:493:12:409:55:03
10TAJSICH, SonjaDEU1:03:095:27:203:25:5210:01:37


Men’s Race

It was Frenchman Sylvain Sudrie and Johann Ackermann of Germany leading the way in the swim. South Africa’s Kyle Buckingham kept pace with the leaders with Frederik Van Lierde on the shoulders of Buckingham. Van Lierde moved into third position before Sudrie emerged first in 49 minutes and 4 seconds. A group of 10 men all exited the water within a minute of each other with Ackermann in second, Van Lierde in third, Mike Aigroz (CHE) and Italy’s Alberto Casadei in fourth and fifth.

Bertrand Billard (FRA) and Buckingham made headway to move into the top four with Van Lierde and Sudrie. The quartet remained close throughout the bike, but Van Lierde upped his output after the first lap and opened a four minute lead by the 132 km mark. The Belgian powered on into the T2 and proceeded onto the run with a massive 13 minute lead over Buckingham and Bart Aernouts (BEL).

With Van Lierde in complete control, it was up to Buckingham and Aernouts to stake a claim for the title or be content with second place. While Van Lierde continued to push ahead, a fierce tussle was emerging between Buckingham and Aernouts who were running shoulder to shoulder. Spaniard Ivan Rana, meanwhile, was making headway after being fourth into T2.

Buckingham tried, but could not get away from Aernouts, but Rana had managed to pass them both to move into second place as they started the second lap. Van Lierde was relentless, though, despite the sapping heat, and put in a masterclass performance. The 2013 world champion finished in a time of 08:16:34, followed by Rana 14 minutes and 9 seconds later with Aernouts claiming the final podium position at 08:35:58.  

“I came to win in Africa, and I did,” said a confident Van Lierde. “Even though I didn’t break the record, I am happy with a win for now. Next time I will take the record.” 

Van Lierde threw a challenge down for the rest of the season as he comfortably came up trumps in a highly competitive field.

Top 10 Pro Men

1VAN LIERDE, FrederikBEL0:49:204:32:452:49:458:16:35
2RANA, IvanESP0:49:284:48:222:48:448:30:45
3AERNOUTS, BartBEL0:52:074:44:302:55:048:35:59
4TRAUTMAN, MattZAF0:51:574:48:012:53:108:37:21
5LLANOS, EnekoESP0:49:364:47:442:55:428:37:50
6DIEDEREN, BasNED0:49:314:46:562:56:518:38:14
7MCNAMEE, DavidGBR0:49:274:54:412:54:558:43:35
8VIENNOT, CyrilFRA0:51:574:47:283:01:118:45:55
9DEL CORRAL, VictorESP0:56:194:55:152:51:158:47:10
10CUNNAMA, JamesZAF0:51:344:51:532:59:548:47:45


- Article Ironman SA. Main and second images: Christopher Hitchcock

See our 2015 Standard Bank Ironman Gallery below:

news 3450 3541 img 0754 JPGnews 3450 3542 img 0752 JPGnews 3450 3543 img 0755 JPGnews 3450 3546 img 0793 JPGnews 3450 3547 img 0798 JPGnews 3450 3548 img 0851 JPGnews 3450 3549 img 0852 JPGnews 3450 3550 img 0855 JPGnews 3450 3551 img 0857 JPGnews 3450 3552 img 0861 JPGnews 3450 3553 img 0866 JPGnews 3450 3554 img 0867 JPGnews 3450 3555 img 0871 JPGnews 3450 3556 img 0873 JPGnews 3450 3557 img 0874 JPGnews 3450 3558 img 0875 JPGnews 3450 3559 img 0879 JPGnews 3450 3560 img 0882 JPGnews 3450 3561 img 0885 JPGnews 3450 3562 img 0888 JPGnews 3450 3563 sam 2381 JPGnews 3450 3564 sam 2380 JPGnews 3450 3565 sam 2377 JPGnews 3450 3566 sam 2376 JPGnews 3450 3567 sam 2373 JPGnews 3450 3568 sam 2372 JPGnews 3450 3569 sam 2369 JPGnews 3450 3570 sam 2364 JPGnews 3450 3571 sam 2358 JPGnews 3450 3572 sam 2354 JPGnews 3450 3573 sam 2352 JPGnews 3450 3574 sam 2351 JPGnews 3450 3575 img 0756 JPGnews 3450 3576 img 0757 JPGnews 3450 3577 img 0768 JPGnews 3450 3578 img 0790 JPGnews 3450 3579 img 0794 JPGnews 3450 3580 img 0795 JPGnews 3450 3581 img 0851 JPGnews 3450 3582 img 0852 JPGnews 3450 3583 img 0859 JPGnews 3450 3584 img 0860 JPGnews 3450 3585 img 0861 JPGnews 3450 3586 img 0862 JPGnews 3450 3587 img 0863 JPGnews 3450 3588 img 0864 JPGnews 3450 3589 img 0876 JPGnews 3450 3590 img 0877 JPGnews 3450 3591 img 0881 JPGnews 3450 3592 img 0889 JPGnews 3450 3593 img 0890 JPGnews 3450 3594 img 0893 JPGnews 3450 3595 img 0894 JPGnews 3450 3596 img 0895 JPGnews 3450 3597 img 0896 JPGnews 3450 3598 img 0897 JPG