Timothy O’Donnell has snatched a win in the dying stages of the race after catching Sebastian Kienle just before the end of the run. O’Donnell showed his class today with a gutsy run and a very fast 1:14 and is now the USA 70.3 champion and deservedly so. O’Donnell went out too hard at the start of the run and was feeling light headed. He said he never felt great out there running. He still managed a 1:14 though which most of us only dream of. This showed why he is one of the classiest triathletes around.
Tim O’Donnell, last year’s US Ironman Champion, was second at the 2011 US 70.3 champs and this year he was determined to go one better. O’Donnell had his work cut out for him with 3-4 top class athletes ahead of him out of T2. Knowing that he was not feeling 100% he had to dig deep and keep on pushing when others may have settled for a minor podium spot. Running through these feelings of being off the pace is the mark of a true champion. O’Donnell caught Kienle with in two miles of the finish and pulled away. Kienle wasn’t finished through and with a mile to go pulled back level and then pulled away from O’Donnell. O’Donnell wasn’t finished and he surged again and we had a sprint finish on our hands.
It is great to see that someone as good as O’Donnell is so well liked by all in the sport. It is a rare quality. O’Donnell has spent a bit of time in with girlfriend and Aussie Mirinda Carfrae. They have been based in Noosa and trained with the Bennetts, Luke McKenzie and co. There have been a large number of Australia’s leading pros in Noosa over the Aussie summer. Siri Lindley was based there with most of her athletes along with the Grangers and many more. Anna Cleaver was also based there. Cleaver led the women out of the water today but pulled out during the bike leg.
In his second Ironman 70.3 triathlon Lance Armstrong lead from the front for most of the bike leg. He set up his ride with another strong swim performance. Even though Lance is a consummate professional he is still finding his way in triathlon. Each race will be an experiment at this stage. Armstrong finished in 6th place with a credible 3:54:35. In the end the run pace of the top four guys was just too fast today for Armstrong. Lance ran a 1:17 in Panama but was over that today with a 1:22 (Lance run splits below against Tim O’Donnells)
(Apologies for the 6th in the headline. Lance was 7th as we know. If we change the headline we break all the links so it stays)
Armstrong said after the race that he had some nutrition and hydration issues. The hydration in particular. It isn’t an issue of not hydrating just what he is using is not working. He will be using these races to test different approaches and today’s stomach problems will be part of that process. Despite slowing to a walk in the late stages of the run Armstrong punched on and came home to take 7th.
The final four miles of the run were not much fun for Armstrong as you can see by the splits below. He felt that there was not much fun happening at that stage.
An interesting observation from Lance was that with the flat course two hours in one position was not ideal. At least with Panama and the hills you are moving around in to different positions on the bike and getting different muscles activated.
The race was fairly uneventful until around halfway in to the run. This is when O’Donnell and Raelert started to pass the leading males. Raelert’s performance was also a talking point. He had been sick during the week and by all counts shouldn’t have
Most expected Armstrong to break away on the bike but it never eventuated. It almost looked like he was not that comfortable on the ride. Armstrong lead on to the run but was quickly swallowed by Poulat and then Kinlea. Tim O’Donnell eventually caught him and went on to hunt down the two Europeans out in front.
Kiwi Bryan Rhodes was having a good race until he cramped on the bike. His recent travels from Australia caught up with him. 2 1/2 days spent getting to Galveston took its toll. He kept on and finished the race with a 1:25 run. He said after he felt great once the race was finished.
The race played out no differently than most races 70.3s with the exception of the media coverage and TV cameras everywhere. We aren’t complaining.
The girls are saying that there was more than the usual amount of testosterone out there today. All the men were more aggressive than normal with everyone wanting to beat Lance.
Full race report to come…
|Split Name||Distance||Split Time||Race Time||Pace|
|2.9 mi||2.9 mi||16:26||2:48:20||5:41/mi|
|4.6 mi||1.7 mi||8:41||2:57:01||5:10/mi|
|7.2 mi||2.7 mi||16:54||3:13:55||6:22/mi|
|8.8 mi||1.5 mi||9:21||3:23:16||6:06/mi|
|11.6 mi||2.8 mi||18:27||3:41:43||6:29/mi|
|13.1 mi||1.5 mi||12:49||3:54:32||8:29/mi|
|Split Name||Distance||Split Time||Race Time||Pace|
|2.9 mi||2.9 mi||15:16||2:48:46||5:16/mi|
|4.6 mi||1.7 mi||8:31||2:57:17||5:04/mi|
|7.2 mi||2.7 mi||16:33||3:13:50||6:14/mi|
|8.8 mi||1.5 mi||8:51||3:22:41||5:47/mi|
|11.6 mi||2.8 mi||16:17||3:38:58||5:44/mi|
|13.1 mi||1.5 mi||8:42||3:47:40||5:45/mi|
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