There were maiden victories all round at Ironman UK last weekend with Britain’s Tamsin Lewis winning in Bolton on her M-dot debut, while French athlete Cyril Viennot won the men’s race ahead of former British middle-distance champ Joe Skipper.
In the men’s pro race, GB’s Harry Wiltshire led the swim pack into T1 along with Belgium’s Axel Seebroek, holding 2mins over a chase pack that included Ironman Wales champion Scott Neyedli (GBR) and Cyril Viennot. However, after his terrible fall at Ironman Nice earlier this month, Wiltshire was forced to retire from the bike around halfway through.
Viennot pushed hard in the second half of the bike and cut the Belgian athlete’s lead down to under two minutes going into T2. The Frenchman grabbed the lead by the halfway point of the run and went on to cross the line in 8:44:10, followed by Britain’s Joe Skipper and Kirill Kostegarov (EST).
In the women’s race, Lewis put in the second-fastest swim but still trailed Germany’s Katja Konschak into T1 by nearly four minutes. The British athlete managed to claw back a big chunk of Konschak’s lead within the first 20km or so, grabbing the lead by the halfway point of the bike and never giving it up.
After building up a lead of 14:13mins going into T2, Lewis continued to push and managed to extend that gap by around five minutes, breaking the tape in under nine hours in her first ever Ironman. Silver was taken by Konschak, and Britain’s Joanna Carritt took bronze for her third podium finish at Ironman UK in four years.
Many of the pros returned later to hand out medals to the large age-group field taking part, along with three-time Ironman world champion Craig Alexander. For full results head here.
Tickets for next year’s Ironman UK will go on sale at 4pm this afternoon (Monday 21 Juy), and are again expected to sell out within 50hrs. To sign up head to www.ironmanuk.com.
(Main image: Getty)