The day may have been overcast with clouds and drops of rain, but the home crowds were anything but when it became clear a home victory was likely, as local boy Andi Dreitz powered his way round.
Jesper Svensson from Sweden was first out of the 3.8km swim in 49:46mins, with Kiwi Braden Currie 30secs behind in a time of 50:16, followed by Andy Potts from the USA in 50:20. Fourth out was David McNamee from Britain in 50:21 and Dreitz was fifth in 51:28.
Dreitz led the race from 40km on the bike claiming the fastest 180km split of the day in 4:13:12, but his lead into T2 was tight with Andi Bocherer from Germany just 3secs behind and Potts 3:11 away. The three Andys had dominated the bike leg at Roth.
However, Dreitz wasn’t going to relinquish his lead and by 8km he had 1:28mins of daylight over Bocherer. Potts had slipped to fourth behind Australian Cameron Wurf, who, after a disappointing swim that left him at the back of the field, had powered through the pack on his bike, and was now doing the same on the run.
Bocherer also started to fall down the field and swim leader Svensson soon overtook him, running a 2:48:43 marathon to claim second place in 8:02:20. Wurf finished in third, in a time of 8:04:08.
The fastest run of the day, 2:41:01, was posted by British pro David McNamee. A puncture on the bike leg denied him a place on the podium, but an amazing marathon meant he finished fifth and with questions of what might have been?
But the day belonged to local hero Dreitz who finished in a time of 7:59:02, over 3mins ahead of Svensson.
He said: “I went through many ups and downs today. This victory here is insane. This is the best finish line in the world.”
View this post on Instagram