Cairns, the home to two of the most breathtaking natural beauties of Australia – the Great Barrier Reef, and the Wet Tropics Rainforest – is all set to host the Cairns Airport Ironman Asia-Pacific Championship Cairns on Sunday, 6th of June. The event will also mark the 10th anniversary of the Ironman races in Cairns.
This Asia-Pacific Championship brings a momentous chance for athletes to earn their slots in the all-important 2021 Ironman World Championship, set to take place in Kailua-Kona, Hawaii, on 9th October. In total, we’ll see 75 athletes making their way through the Cairns Airport Ironman Asia-Pacific Championship Cairns to the world championship.
The widely renowned “race in paradise” is certainly a dream spot to race for many including the seasoned triathlete, Max Neumann. Max, who wore the crown last year, is definitely one of the hot favorites this season. On 6th June, exactly one week after his 26th birthday, Max will surely be hoping to celebrate in big style.
Mike Phillips, holding the record of world’s fastest debut time, is another aspiring star featuring this year. Having finished second on the 2021 IM New Zealand and fourth on the Port of Tauranga Half 2021, the New Zealander is longing to shine again in Cairns next week. On his Instagram, Mike expressed his excitement “to be able to cross the ditch again.”
Another athlete to watch for this year is Tim Van Berkel. In the last IM Cairns, Tim was able to secure second place. He also stood well at IRONMAN 70.3 Geelong, and Husky Ultimate this year. According to TriRating, Tim has the highest winning odds of 29% in the 2021 IRONMAN Cairns.
Matt Burton, who was placed 4rth in the IM Cairns 2019, will be returning to Cairns this year with high aspirations. Along with Matt, another seasoned athlete, Levi Maxwell will be up for scoring big in the contest.
Among the favorite female racers, the most fascinating to watch will be the front runner of previous IM Cairns, Amelia Rose Watkinson. In 2021, Amelia has shown great consistency by attaining 2nd place in all of her races: IM 70.3 Geelong, Husky Ultimate, and Hell of the West. She will surely strive to keep on her exceptional success streak.
Renee Kiley is also one of the potential titleholders this year. She stood third in the 2020 IRONMAN Cairns. Besides, Renee has achieved 4rth place in this year’s Challenge Shepparton. Another exciting name on the female list is Rebecca Clarke. Her second place in the 2021 IRONMAN New Zealand and the 2021 Challenge Wanaka Half speaks volumes of her skills. It’ll be exciting to see her contending for rising to the occasion in Cairns.
Will we see these top contenders, sitting on the throne this year? or some other aspiring triathlete will surprise us? The answer to this question is certainly worth waiting for.