Alistair Brownlee pulls out of Ironman South Africa

Alistair Brownlee faces another setback as he looks to return to racing from injury. Here's what you need to know...

Alistair Brownlee

Alistair Brownlee‘s injury woes look set to continue in 2023, with the Brit announcing he’s decided not to race at this weekend’s Ironman South Africa due to a sore hip.


Writing on Instagram, the double Olympic champion said: “I’ve decided not to start Ironman South Africa this weekend. My preparation has gone well and I’ve enjoyed training for the early season goal.

“Unfortunately, I’ve developed a slightly sore hip over the last few days. So, as hard as it is for me to exercise caution and, as it’s only March, I think it’s best not to risk it.”

A series of unfortunate events

The news is another blow in a series of unfortunate events for Brownlee over the last 12 months.

The Yorkshireman was forced to pull out of the first Ironman World Championship of 2022 at the last minute as he was feeling rough after a bought of glandular fever.

He instead turned his attention to the Sub7 project that he and the wider triathlon community was awaiting with anticipation, but sadly had to withdraw from that due to a stress response in his hip that required immediate treatment.

He made his return to racing at the PTO Canadian Open in July and later set the British record at Ironman Kalmar in Sweden, securing his place at Kona in the process.

But it wasn’t to be. Brownlee suffered a stress fracture in his femur and announced he was out for the rest of the year.

Better safe than sorry

Admittedly, this time it seems that Brownlee’s decision not to race has been taken as more of a precaution rather than a direct result from injury.

In his Instagram post he added: “I have considered starting. I’m fit and love to race. But, I’m not very good at stopping once that gun goes and running a marathon is never something to be taken lightly.

“I’ll have a few days enjoying South Africa and then will get back into training for another race. Good luck to everyone competing in Port Elizabeth and thank you for all the support.”

Hopefully we’ll see Brownlee lining up at a race soon, so watch this space…


Top image credit: Nigel Roddis/Getty Images for Ironman