Carlos Lopez-Diaz won it on the swim and the bike and Jocelyn McCauley sealed her victory on the run at the fourth edition of Ironman Mallorca.
Lopez-Diaz won his first Ironman with a 2nd-fastest 48:56 swim, a race-best 4:36:15 bike split on Mallorca’s hilly course, and defended his lead with 5th-fastest 2:55:42 marathon to finish in 8:26:09 with a 5:42 margin of victory over Markus Fachbach of Germany and 6:23 over 3rd-place finisher Gustavo Rodriguez of Spain.
McCauley combined a women’s 4th-fastest 56:02 swim, women’s 3rd-quickest 5:06:10 bike split and women’s-best 3:03:50 run to finish in 9:11:55 with an 11:45 margin over 2nd place Maja Stage Nielsen of Denmark and 12:32 over 3rd-place Tineke Van den Berg of Netherlands.
Lopez-Diaz led the pro men’s swim wave with a 48:56 split (39 seconds slower than age grouper Benjamin Pernet) that gave him a 4 seconds lead on Horst Reichel of Germany, 3:34 on Roman Deisenhofer of Germany, 3:36 on Konstantin Bachor of Germany, 3:45 on Markus Fachbach of Germany, and 3:51 on Marcel Zamora of Spain.
At 78km, Lopez-Diaz maintained a 2:41 to 2:51 lead on a tightly bunched pack of 7 men including Deisenhofer, Fachbach, Bachor, Reichel, Samuel Huerzeler of Switzerland, Herve Banti of Monaco and Zamora. Lopez-Diaz continued his lonely ride through 168km with a 5:35 lead on Fachbach and Bachor, 7:57 on Zamora and 9:35 on Reichel.
After a race-best 4:36:15 bike split, Lopez-Diaz arrived in T2 with a 5:43 lead on Fachbach (4:38:00 ride), 6:27 on Bachor, 9:17 on Zamora and 9:40 on Reichel.
Lopez-Diaz, a 33-year-old part time pro whose best previous races were a 5th place at this race in 2014 and a win at the Spanish long distance championship last year, cruised home with a 2:55:42 run that gave him a 5:42 margin over runner-up Fachbach and 6:32 over 3rd-place Gustavo Rodriguez, who ran his way into the final spot on the podium, with a race-best 2:48:02 marathon.
Lauren Parker of the U.S. led the swim in 53:31, which gave her a 1:52 margin on Swiss up-and-comer Emma Bilham, 2:28 to 2:31 on a quartet including Deborah Van Gossum of Belgium, Natascha Schmitt of Germany, Diane Luethi of Switzerland and McCauley.
Schmitt quickly took the lead and by 31km assumed a 1:14 lead on Bilham, 3:49 on McCauley, 4:26 on Luethi and 4:29 on Parker. By 121km, things sorted out with Schmitt taking a 5:20 lead on McCauley, 5:29 on surging Tineke Van den Berg of Netherlands, 6:52 on Nielsen and 9:13 on Sara Svensk of Sweden.
On her way to a by-far women’s-best 4:53:59 bike split, Van den Berg seized the lead in the final third of the bike leg and arrived at T2 with a 2:11 lead on McCauley (5:06:10 bike split), 4:36 on Schmitt (5:08:43 ride), and 5:01 on Stage Nielsen (5:06:06 ride).
By 12 km into the marathon, McCauley wrested the lead from Van den Berg. At 15km, McCauley led Van den Berg by 1:37, Stage Nielsen by 3:36, Schmitt by 8:59 and Luethi by 12:16. On her way to a women’s-best 3:03:59 run, McCauley left the pack well behind, crossing the line in 9:11:55 with an 11:45 margin of victory over Stage Nielsen (3:13:19 run) and 12:32 over 3rd-place Van den Berg (3:18:57 run). Sara Svensk advanced to 4th place with a women's 2nd-best 3:09:00 run.
McCauley, a Texas native who ran NCAA cross country for BYU, earned international attention with an age group women's overall victory at the 2014 Ironman World Championship. McCauley showed she belonged in the pro ranks with a 4th place at Ironman 70.3 Dubai this January.
September 24, 2016
S 2.4 mi. / B 112 mi. / R 25.2 mi.
1. Carlos Lopez-Diaz (ESP) 8:26:09
2. Markus Fachbach (GER) 8:31:51
3. Gustavo Rodriguez (ESP) 8:32:32
4. Marcel Zamora (ESP) 8:39:29
5. Michael Ruenz (GER) 8:39:37
1. Jocelyn McCauley (USA) 9:11:55
2. Maja Nielsen (DEN) 9:23:40
3. Tineke Van den Berg (NED) 9:24:27
4. Sara Svensk (SWE) 9:28:58
5. Diane Luethi (SUI) 9:39:58