In his first race since breaking the 8hr mark at the Melbourne Ironman, Craig â€œCrowieâ€ Alexander has etched his name on the prestigious EagleMan monument in Cambridge, Maryland. Crowie capped of a weekend off strong Australian performances around the world and showed why he is the best in the game over these distances.
The historic Eagleman event is one of the most popular Ironman 70.3 triathlons in the USA and is a qualifier race for both the 2012 Ironman World Championship in Hawaii in October and the 2012 Ironman Championship 70.3 in Lake Las Vegas in September later this year. Alexander will the first athlete in history aiming to defend both titles.
Emerging from the 1.9 km swim Alexander was dropped by fellow Australian Greg Bennett like a â€œbad habitâ€ who must have learnt a lesson or two from his last outing against Lance Armstrong just a week ago.
The reason for the frantic pace soon became obvious as both Alexander and Bennett were passed at the 45km mark on the bike by former race winner and renowned cyclist TJ Tollakson.
Alexander responded but Tollakson maintained a minute and a half lead buffer going into the final half marathon run leg. After a frantic ride, Crowie found his feet a few miles later to run over 4mins out of a tiring Tollakson. Bennett also showed how a quick a learner he has been since stepping up to Ironman distance running in to second place to finish just 2mins and 17 seconds behind than Alexander.
Last week in the Honu, Hawaii 70.3 Lance Armstrong continued his transition to Ironman elitism by defeating the same Greg Bennett by 2mins 46seconds.
Today’s result confirms the Crowie v Lance battle will be a one watch come when the Championship races roll around. No doubt Greg Bennett will be top of the class by then also.
Also racing was Australian Richie Cunningham. Cunnigham won Rev3 Quassy a week ago and backed up to post a 4th overall to continue his solid racing in the US.
Meredith Kessler won the women’s race in devestating fashion. Kessler finished 10mins ahead of second placed Margaret Shapiro after dominating all three stages of the race.