Ironman 70.3 St George – US Pro Championship ANZAC Preview

Bevan Docherty winning in Sydney 2010

The field at St George this weekend is one of the best fields assembled. If you are going to watch or follow one race this year this is the one. Both swims will be epic. In the men’s race there are at least 20 front pack swimmers. Once out of the water there is going to be guys like Ben Collins, Sebastian Kienle, Cameron Dye and co will be attempting to blow apart the field on the bike leg.

To win the men’s race someone is going to have to run close to 70mins. There are just so many fast guys. The ITU guys racing will be running the house down from the start. We saw Greg Bennett run a 32:21min 10kmm last weekend at St Anthonys. The Vasilievs should be a couple of the fastest on the day.

Lisa Norden will be one of the hot favourites but she will not have it all her own way. Annabel Luxford will be right on her heels out of T1. Last year’s female 70.3 and Ironman world champion Leanda Cave will be hoping to cross the line first and has just completed her longest training block since Kona last year. She will be in fine form.

As always our previews have a slant towards Australians racing and the odd Kiwi. With that in mind we’ll start off with the two Ironman 70.3 Asia Pacific Champions who are both racing at St George. Christian Kemp and Annabel Luxford are both starting and we will be watching them eagerly.

Kemp is focused on Ironman Frankfurt and may be slightly of the pace this weekend. He is lacking a small amount of his top end speed at the moment but is here to race. He will be up in the mix in the swim and will be hoping to start the run at the front. Then it will be a matter of whether he can keep up with the speedsters. The word is he may not have a sub 72min half marathon in him this weekend.

Second to Kemp at the Asia Pacific 70.3 championship this year was Kiwi Bevan Docherty who went on to win Ironman New Zealand in March. Docherty will right up in the mix for the entire race and would have to be one of the favourites to take it out. Docherty showed his ability to race over this distance in January yet again and last year was third overall in the world 70.3 champs in Las Vegas. He will be there to win.

Since winning the Ironman 70.3 Asia Pacific Championship Annabel Luxford has had a couple of hurdles. She has no real expectation from this weekend’s race. “I’m not in my best shape. I had knee surgery nine weeks ago to repair torn meniscus from a training accident. Just pleased to be back racing. This is a very tough course, similar to Las Vegas just not as hot. Hopefully this will be good practice for Vegas later in the year.”

Sam Betten had a solid race last weekend at St Anthonys with a 13th overall. This weekend will be another step up and will provide Sam with more valuable experience.

Paul Matthews is also a strong contender and can run very quick. He is hoping the St George NRL jersey will get him much needed home town support.

Luke McKenzie’s recent 10th overall at the Oceanside 70.3 in a red hot field will give him a lot of confidence going in to St George. McKenzie also race the recent San Diego Fearless Pro F1 triathlon for 11th overall. You could have thrown a blanket over the field. McKenzie was only 1:46 off the winner Aaron Royle’s time. Considering the distance this was impressive.

Matthew Pellow is also racing. We last saw Pellow racing in Australia at the Geelong Long Course. He finished a very good 8th overall in a field full of top men.

Mitch Robins will be looking to see an improvement on his bike time. We saw Robins take a very good 5th overall the other week at the New Orleans 70.3. He was in a very good field and ran one of the fastest half marathons at 1:12:20. With his strong swim he will be in the mix out of T1.

In the women’s race we also see ACT’s Kat Baker along with 2012 Abu Dhabi International triathlon winner Nikki Butterfield. Butterfield has plenty of podiums over the distance and will be focused on adding one more.


14 Paul Amey CA
33 Damon Barnett CA
13 Greg Bennett CO
30 Sam Betten QLD
7 Dirk Bockel Intl State
28 Christian Brader Intl State
40 Barrett Brandon TX
51 Tyler Butterfield CO
35 Kevin Collington FL
43 Ben Collins IL
38 Braden Currie OTA
31 Victor Del Corral Tarragona
5 Bevan Docherty CA
52 Lewis Elliot AZ
23 Brian Fleischmann CO
21 Derek Garcia ID
39 Thomas Gerlach AZ
12 Mathias Hecht Intl State
1 Ben Hoffman CO
20 Chad Holderbaum PA
36 Joel Jameson Intl State
18 Jordan Jones CO
48 David Kahn NY
42 Christian Kemp CA
3 Sebastian Kienle GER
16 Paul Matthews CA
11 Luke McKenzie QLD
53 Brent McMahon BC
34 Kirk Nelson UT
15 Filip Ospaly N/A
29 Matthew Pellow NSW
4 Andy Potts CO
6 Michael Raelert Germany
46 Branden Rakita CO
8 Ivan Rana Intl State
2 Jordan Rapp CA
17 Matt Reed CO
41 Christian Ritter Intl State
50 Mitch Robins NSW
32 Matthew Sheeks WA
9 Andrew Starykowicz IL
24 Swen Sundberg Intl State
25 Heath Thurston UT
19 TJ Tollakson IA
10 Maik Twelsiek AZ
47 Joe Umphenour CO
37 Felipe Van de Wyngard Intl State
45 Denis Vasiliev Intl State
49 Ivan Vasiliev Intl State
44 Jesse Vondracek ID
27 Dorian Wagner Intl State
22 Ruedi Wild
26 Trevor Wurtele BC
100 Christine Anderson CO
101 Kat Baker ACT
84 Svenja Bazlen Intl State
68 Laura Bennett CO
86 Ali Black UT
97 Katy Blakemore CO
76 Uli Bromme CO
67 Nikki Butterfield CO
98 Kathleen Calkins CA
79 Terra Castro VA
62 Leanda Cave AZ
65 Linsey Corbin MT
69 Sophie De Groote Intl State
93 Trish Deim ID
89 Amber Ferreira NH
99 Christine Fletcher BC
82 Julia Gajer Intl State
90 Whitney Garcia CO
81 Malaika Homo UT
91 Lindsey Jerdonek CO
88 Danielle Kehoe CO
60 Meredith Kessler CA
96 Heather Leiggi PA
72 Emma-Kate Lidbury Wiltshire
71 Annabel Luxford CA
92 Mackenzie Madison OR
70 Melanie McQuaid BC
87 Lisa Mensink AB
64 Lisa Norden Stockholm
66 Lesley Paterson CA
74 Camilla Pedersen Intl State
73 Sarah Piampiano CA
75 Barbara Riveros Intl State
95 Jeanni Seymour Intl State
78 Margie Shapiro VA
80 Beth Shutt PA
83 Jessica Smith CA
77 Miranda Tomenson-Bha­radwaj ON
94 Beth Walsh CA
85 Charisa Wernick CA
63 Kelly Williamson TX
61 Heather Wurtele BC



Karl Hayes

Karl is a keen age group triathlete who races more than he trains. Good life balance! Karl works in the media industry in Australia and is passionate about the sport of triathlon.