Alessandro Degasperi of Italy made the winning pass with 3 kilometers to go and Diana Riesler of Germany dominated the women's field to win the pro titles at Ironman Lanzarote.
Degasperi overcame an 8-minute deficit after the bike leg to Christian Kramer of Germany with a race-fastest 2:47:15 run. Degasperi finished in 8:56:49 with a 2:41 margin of victory over Kramer, who held the lead from 20 kilometers of the bike until the final 3 kilometers of the run.
Mauro Baertsch of Switzerland finished 3rd, 7:56 behind the winner.
The win comes two weeks after Degasperi’s Olympic distance win at Caldaro and five months after his victory at the ITU European Winter Triathlon Championships.
Riesler overcame a 2:20 deficit after the swim, chased down early leader Michi Herlbauer of Austria by 60km of the bike, then blasted away to an unassailable lead with a 5:37:11 bike split that was 21 minutes faster than her nearest rival (and 17 minutes faster than Anne Jensen of Denmark). Riesler’s 3:16 marathon brought her to the line in 9:56:03 with a 17:46 margin on runner-up Herlbauer.
Caroline Livesey of Great Britain took 3rd, 35:53 after the winner and Shiao-Yu Lin of Taiwan finished 4th, 37:39 back of Riesler.
Riesler’s win adds to a résumé that includes wins at the Ironman Malaysia in 2014 and Challenge Vichy in 2013.
Mark Oude Bennink of Netherlands led the swim in 48:12 followed by nine men who broke 49 minutes – Stephen Bayliss of Great Britain, Owen Cummins of Ireland, Will Clarke of Great Britain, Christian Kramer of Germany, Guy Crawford of New Zealand, two-time Lanzarote Champion (2008 and 2009) Bert Jammaer of Belgium, 2011 IM Lanzarote runner-up Konstantin Bachor of Germany, 2013 and 2014 Lanzarote runner-up Miquel Blanchart of Spain and Dominik Berger of Austria.
Top contenders for the overall further back included Alessandro Degasperi of Italy (14th in 51:11) and Mauro Baertsch of Switzerland (25th in 52:05).
Bachor grabbed the lead at 6km, followed closely by Bayliss, Clarke and Kramer. By 18km, Jammaer led, followed closely by Bachor (+5s) Crawford (+15s), Kramer and Clarke.
On an exceptionally windy day – even for Lanzarote and its typically windswept volcanic hills with 2,550 meters of climbing – Kramer took the lead, then Bachor as the lead group approached the Fire Mountains section.
By 65km of the 180km course, Kramer led, followed by Jammaer (+3s), Bachor (+8s), Crawford (+22s), then Clarke. Two-time runner-up Miquel Blanchart soldiered on 8 minutes arrears.
At 150km, Kramer and Jammaer continued the top two positions followed by Crawford (+5 minutes), Clarke and Degasperi. Blanchart followed, 12 minutes back of second place.
At 160km, Bachor dropped out while Kramer led into T2.
After a race-best 5:05:52 bike split, Kramer led Jammaer (5:09:28) by 3:34, Degasperi (5:12:13) by 8:18, Baertsch (5:10:49) by 8:45, Clarke (5:17:30) by 11:38, and Crawford by 11:56. While he was 18:59 back, Blanchart stood 9th pro as he began the marathon.
By 9km of the run, Kramer held a 2:26 lead over Jammaer, who made up 1 minute and 6:45 over and fast-closing Degasperi, who made up 2:40. Further back, Baertsch held 3rd at a 9:13 gap and Clarke 4th 10:34 down.
By 15km, Kramer led Jammaer by 3:00, Degasperi 3rd at 4:56 down, Baertsch 4th at 8:30, Clarke 5th at 10:37 and Blanchart 6th at 15:39.
By 20km, Degasperi advanced to 2nd, 3:33 behind Kramer and 2 minutes ahead of Jammaer. Baertsch maintained at 8:10 down, with Clarke at 11:17 arrears, and Blanchart 16:45 behind.
By 25km, Kramer led Degasperi by 2:43, Baertsch by 7:59, Jammaer, a bit worn out by his heroics on the bike, by 8:38. By 30km, Degasperi increased the heat on Kramer, whittling the gap down to 1:41 while Baertsch maintained 3rd at 8:10, Jammaer 4th at 10:18 and Blanchart 5th at 14:46 down.
By 35km, Kramer was clinging to a diminishing lead of 33 seconds over Degasperi. At 37km, the gap was 30 seconds, with Baertsch 7:34 down.
With 3km to go, Degasperi passed Kramer and there was no resistance from the German who had fought so hard all day long.
Michi Herlbauer of Austria led the swim with a 53:21 clocking, followed by Seleta Castro of Spain (+22 seconds), Kate Bevilaqua of Australia (+29s), Diana Riesler of Germany (+2:20), and Annabelle Pirotte of Belgium (+3:37). Dangerous biker-runners further back included Eimear Mullan of Ireland (+4:39), Nicole Woysch of Germany (+4:51) and Caroline Livesey of Great Britain (+5:27).
At 20 kilometers into the bike leg, Herlbauer led Riesler by 15 seconds and Bevilaqua by 30 seconds. By 33 km and beset by strong winds, Herlbauer increased her lead slightly over Riesler and Bevilaqua.
Two hours into the ride, Riesler took over the lead, 55 seconds ahead of Herlbauer, with Bevilaqua more than 4 minutes back.
By 150km, Riesler put the hammer down and carved out a formidable lead – 13:30 on Herlbauer and 20 minutes ahead of 3rd-place Livesey.
Riesler arrived at T2 after a dominating, women's-best 5:37:12 split which gave her an 18:59 lead on Herlbauer, 25:52 on Livesey, 33:51 on Anne Jensen of Denmark and 34:28 on fast-fading Bevilaqua, who hung on grimly in 8th after a 6:13:21 bike split.
With such a big lead, Riesler could cruise to the win, but she seemed reluctant to give up much if any ground. By 10k, Riesler maintained a 17:47 lead on Herlbauer and 26:38 on Livesey. By 20km, Riesler showed no sign of weakness and held a 17:42 lead on Herlbauer. By 37 kilometers, Riesler’s lead remained undiminished - 17 minutes-plus on Herlbauer.
May 23, 2015
S 2.4mi. / B 112 mi. / R 26.2 mi.
1. Alessandro Degasperi (ITA) 8:56:49
2. Christian Kramer (GER) 8:59:30
3. Mauro Baertsch (SUI) 9:04:45
4. Miquel Blanchart (ESP) 9:10:25
5. Bert Jammaer (BEL) 9:12:05
6. Daniel Herlbauer (AUT) 9:25:58
7. Sergio Marques (POR) 9:27:58
8. Will Clarke (GBR) 9:28:31
9. Malte Bruns (GER) 9:32:46 * AG
10. Cedric Lassonde (GBR) 9:39:15
1. Diana Riesler (GER) 9:56:03
2. Michi Herlbauer (AUT) 10:13:49
3. Caroline Livesey (GBR) 10:31:56
4. Shiao-Yu Li (TWN) 10:33:42
5. Verena Walter (GER) 10:44:40
6. Anne Jensen (DNK) 10:48:41
7. Saleta Castro (ESP) 10:52:24