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Van Lierde and Hauschildt sparkle in Abu Dhabi

Belgian and Aussie take scorching victories in the heat of the emirates

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Frederik Van Lierde and Melissa Hauschildt took a big money prize purse of $50,000 each as they took the honours in the Abu Dhabi International long course triathlon.

Van Lierde, 33, was in dominant form as he pushed from the front all day to win by over four minutes from Spain’s Eneko Llanos.

After finishing third in Kona, the hotly-tipped Belgian clearly enjoys the sweltering test of the emirates’ capital and returned for a fourth successive year and repeat of his 2011 win.

Bermuda’s Olympian Tyler Butterfield claimed third place with the leading Brit Phil Graves a distant ninth and Dan Halksworth picking up some much-welcomed prize money in tenth.

Jersey pro Halksworth had earlier shown his swim prowesss by leading Scotland's Fraser Cartmell out of the water after a fast 3km first leg.

It wasn’t just the pace that was brutal pace either as Chris McCormack emerged a minute down and nursing a broken finger that combined with hitting a road grate that trashed his rear disc on the bike would soon force an early DNF.

Back at the head of the field, the race was blown apart by the power of Van Lierde on the bike and the scorching early morning winds. After cruising three laps  of the Yas Marina Grand Prix circuit the Belgian put the hammer down and with 30km left pulled clear and extended his margin on the run.

The women’s race was dominated by Hauschildt and Steffen who both exited the swim near the front and then took turns to push the pace on the bike.

On to the 20km run and it was the Swiss Steffen who held the advantage, before former world 70.3 champion Hauschildt powered through for the  victory with Denmark’s Michhelle Vesterby third.

Results

Men

1. Frederik Van Lierde: Swim: 35:21; Bike: 4:48:02; Run: 1:12:47; Total: 6:41:02

2. Eneko Llanos: Swim: 35:27; Bike: 4:48:21; Run: 1:16:14; Total: 6:45:02

3. Tyler Butterfield: Swim: 36:58; Bike: 4:48:16; Run: 1:17:47; Total: 6:47:49

Women

1. Melissa Hauschildt: Swim: 41.17; Bike: 5:17:45; Run: 1:16:42; Total: 7:20:29

2. Caroline Steffen: Swim: 38:20; Bike: 5:19:07; Run: 1:21:00; Total: 7:23:53

3. Michelle Vesterby: Swim: 38.19; Bike: 5:21:06; Run: 1:22:27; Total: 7:27:52

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