Australian triathlete Kate Bevilaqua has just won Ironman Louisville in the USA, her third career title over this distance.
A string of injuries have plagued Bevilaqua in recent seasons, preventing the West Australian from competing at her potential. Having not won an Ironman Title since 2011, Bevilaqua made the decision to focus on getting her form back on track this year. Today’s victory was reward for the dedication and patience that the Australian has demonstrated, and hopefully motivation for others that might be struggling with injury.
Kate’s 49:03 swim saw her enter T1 in 4th place, a mere eleven seconds behind two-time Ironman Louisville champion and consistent top swimmer Nina Kraft. Having spent the past couple of seasons working hard on her swim technique, Kate has shaved about ten minutes off her swim splits from a couple of years ago.
It was Svetlana Blazevic that led Kraft and Bevilaqua from the water, although it didn’t take long for the duo to take control of the race. The bike turned into a battle for the lead, until some reported nutrition issues from Kraft took their toll and saw Bevilaqua take the lead from 100km. American Whitney Garcia rode fastest of the day with a 5:08:09 to enter T2 in second place behind Bevilaqua.
With a lead off the bike Bevilaqua didn’t look back, remaining in control and cruising home in a comfortable 3:20:29 to take the Ironman victory. Garcia faded to third, with Canadian Brooke Brown running in her down in the closing miles. Brown recorded the day’s fastest run in 3:15:39 to take second place, just 35 seconds ahead of Garcia.
Meanwhile German Kraft managed to minimise her losses on the run to finish with a 3:25 marathon and a fourth place finish.
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