Andi Böcherer and Laura Philipp defended their 2015 titles with dominating bike splits at Challenge Heilbronn. Due to heavy rains that caused strong currents, the swim portion was replaced by a 5k run, thus making the race a duathlon.
Andi Böcherer used a 2nd-best 14:20 split for the opening 5k run, a by-far race-fastest 2:14:42 bike split and a 7th-best 1:17:15 run to finish in 3:48:39, with an 8:08 margin of victory over Maurice Clavel and 8:18 over Horst Reichel to make a 1-2-3 sweep for the German men at Challenge Heilbronn.
Böcherer’s bike split was 7:32 better than the next-best effort by Andreas Dreitz, who faded to 11th with a discouraging 1:25:39 run. Clavel’s 3rd-best 2:25:35 bike split – 10:53 slower than Böcherer – combined with his 3rd-fastest 1:16:15 run was good enough to take 2nd, 10 seconds ahead of fast closing Horst Reichel, who posted the day’s fastest run (1:14:19).
The wins adds luster to Böcherer’s 2016 season, which includes a win at Challenge Fuerteventura in April.
Coming off wins at Ironman 70.3 Mallorca and Ironman 70.3 St. Pölten, Laura Philipp entered Challenge Heilbronn on a hot streak and as defending champion.
A tied-for-3rd-best 16:07 split for the opening 5-kilometer run left Philipp 20 seconds back of run leader Julia Viellehner and 24 seconds ahead of serious rival Julia Ertmer, and more than a minute ahead of top contenders Lena Berlinger and Barbara Scherrer.
After her sizzling fast 2:37:40 bike split – 5:25 better than the next-best effort of Lena Berlinger, 5:28 better than the 3rd-best split of Anne Falk, 6:53 better than Viellehner, and 8:37 better than Ertmer – Philipp could cruise with a women’s 2nd-fastest 1:22:21 run to finish in 4:18:46. This gave her a 4:28 margin of victory over Viellehner (women's-best 1:20:07 run) and 12:23 over 3rd-place finisher Berlinger (1:27:49 run).
June 19, 2016
R 5k / B 90k / R 21k
1. Andi Böcherer (GER) 3:48:39
2. Maurice Clavel (GER) 3:56:47
3. Horst Reichel (GER) 3:56:57
4. Marc Dülsen (GER) 3:59:33
5. Dominik Sowieja (GER) 3:59:48
1. Laura Philipp (GER) 4:18:46
2. Julia Viellehner (GER) 4:23:14
3. Lena Berlinger (GER) 4:31:09
4. Julia Ertmer (GER) 4:35:41
5. Barbara Scherrer (SUI) 4:37:01