Brown and Lawn break records in Taupo

Cameron Brown won the 2010 Bonita Ironman New Zealand in 8:21:52 and that gave him a record ninth title in NZ, a feat previously not done by any other athlete at any other Ironman competition before. Joanna Lawn captured her 7th title in a course record time of 9:14:35.

The men

After NZ Prime Minister John Key fired the start gun, the Pros entered Lake Taupo in seemingly perfect weather conditions and before too long Kieran Doe moved to the front of the pack. Doe kept the lead throughout the swim and exited the water in 45:38. 2009 runner-up Terenzo Bozzone was 2nd into transition, 51 seconds later and 8–time Ironman New Zealand Champion Cameron Brown was 8th in a time of 49:26.

Bozzone quickly caught Doe and the two rode together for a few miles before Bozzone rode away. The distance between Bozzone and Doe steadily grew and by km 60 his lead was 6:10, but by now Brown had moved into second place just a second up on Doe. The lead grew to over 7:30 about halfway through the bike, but by 140k the gap was back down to about 6 minutes. Over the last 40k the lead shrunk even faster and by the time Bozzone hit T2 his lead over Brown and Doe was down to just under a minute. Onlookers though reported that Bozzone eased up towards the end on the bike and appeared to be in great spirits.

Bozzone had a swift transition and was off on the run. Doe also moved through T2 fast, but he kept looking over his shoulder to see where the defending champion was, and surely enough Brown ran past him quite swiftly. Brown then had his sights set on Bozzone and caught him by the 10k mark. From that point on Brown calmly pulled away and by the 30k mark his lead was up to 4 minutes. Making it look relatively easy, Brown crossed the line in 8:21:52 and captured his record 9th Ironman New Zealand title. Actually no one else has ever won the same Ironman event nine times so this is quite an amazing feat.

The women

2009 Ironman New Zealand champion Gina Crawford led the women’s swim from the start and managed to get out of the water in 50:02, with Joanna Lawn and Sarah Pollett another 45 seconds back.

Lawn made up 20 seconds in transition and it did not take her very long to catch up to Crawford. Many eyes were also on Melissa Holt, the 3-time New Zealand TT champion who had a pretty solid swim in 54:49 and her presence had promised quite a show on the bike. Holt steadily took time out of the leaders and about 100km into the bike, Holt finally caught Crawford and Lawn. Kate Bevilaqua was next on the road, but she was over 5 minutes behind the newly formed trio. Soon though Holt moved into the lead and it appeared that Crawford started to pay for the hard pace as Lawn also rode away from her. 150k into the bike Holt had a 1:15 cushion over Lawn and a 2:45 gap over Crawford, but just like in the men’s race, the leader started to falter a bit at the end and Holt and Lawn hit T2 just 20 seconds apart. Crawford got into transition in 3rd place just under 3 minutes after the leader.

Out on the run though both Lawn and Crawford started to put time on Holt who was now sitting in third place. During the first k’s of the run Crawford gained some time on Lawn, but that soon changed as Lawn started to ease away from the defending champion and by k 14, Lawn was up by 4:15. In 2009 Crawford had denied Lawn a 7th title in Taupo, but this time Lawn wasn’t going to be stopped. Kim Loeffler meanwhile had run herself into third place and started to gain on the fading Crawford. But up front it was all about Lawn who easily won her 7th Ironman New Zealand title in a course record time of 9:14:35. Crawford held on to second place and Loeffler rounded out the podium.

Bonita Ironman New Zealand
Taupo, NZ
March 6, 2010
S 2.4 mi/ B 112 mi/ R 26.2 mi

Unofficial Results

Top men

1.) Cameron Brown (NZL) 8:21:52
2.) Terenzo Bozzone (NZL) 8:30:00
3.) Kieran Doe (NZL) 8:34:16
4.) Keegan Williams (NZL) 8:40:11
5.) James Bowstead (NZL) 9:02:46
6.) Andrew Howse (NZL) 9:06:40 * AG M35-39
7. Hayden Armstrong (NZL) 9:06:56 * AG M30-34
8.) Chris Waterhouse (AUS) 9:10:41
9) Anthony Rule (AUS) 9:12:23 * AG M25-29
10.) Christoph Sonnack (GER) 9:13:40 * AG M30-34

Top women

1.) Joanna Lawn (NZL) 9:14:35
2.) Gina Crawford (NZL) 9:28:26
3.) Kim Loeffler (USA) 9:30:57
4.) Sarah Pollett (AUS) 9:45:44
5.) Britta Martin (NZL) 9:47:11
6.) Belinda Harper (NZL) 9:48:55 * AG F35-39
7.) Nicole Ward (AUS) 9:51:05
8.) Sue Mellsop (NZL) 10:03:20 * AG F40-44
9.) Susan Casey (AUS) 10:06:12 * AG F35-39
10.) Kate Bevilaqua (AUS) 10:18:12