Potts, Snow take Florida 70.3

Andy Potts’ race-best swim and bike provided most of his 3:56 margin of victory over Maxim Kriat and Caitlin’s Snow’s sizzling 1:20:30 run accounted for most of her 6:05 margin over Nina Kraft at the Ford Ironman 70.3 Florida Sunday.

Potts took control from the start as his 23:25 swim was 52 seconds faster than 2nd best Kevin Collington, 54 seconds better than David Kahn of the US, about 1:20 better than a group of three including Stanislav Krylov of Russia, Andres Castillo of Colombia, and James Cotter of Austin, Texas -- and 1:39 better than eventual 2nd place finisher Maxim Kriat of the Ukraine. Potts also dominated the bike over Florida’s pancake flat terrain, hitting T2 with a 2:08:44 split that was 62 seconds better than Kirill Kotsegarov of Estonia, 1:16 better than Sebastian Pedraza of Italy, 1:23 better than Krylov, 1:52 better than Kahn, and 2:27 better than Kriat.

On the run, Potts’ second-best 1:17:44 half marathon gave back 40 seconds to Kriat’s race-best 1:17:04 split, but afforded the American star a 3:56 margin of victory in a time of 3:53:14. David Kahn’s 24:19 swim, 2:10:36 bike and 5th-best 1:20:26 run brought him home 3rd, 63 seconds behind Kriat.

Potts’s wire-to-wire win was his second major Ironman 70.3 win of the year after his stirring win in a duel with Rasmus Henning at Rohto Ironman 70.3 California in April.

In the women’s race, Anna Cleaver of New Zealand (26:00) and Nina Kraft of Germany (26:31) led out of the swim, followed by Caitlin Snow of Brockton Massachusetts (28:11) and Jenny Fletcher of Canada (28:56). On the bike, Anna Cleaver’s 2:23:32 gave her the lead at T2, followed by Nina Kraft (-7:40), Snow (-8:41), Gollnick (-10:18) and Leiggi (-10:21).

Snow, who shares her Brockton, Massachusetts hometown with the legendary undefeated heavyweight boxer Rocky Marciano, took the race by the throat with a 1:20:30 run that was topped by only 6 male pros and was 7:21 better than next-best woman Nina Kraft. At the finish, Snow’s 4:22:31 was 6:05 better than runner-up Kraft and 9:43 better than 3rd place Heather Leiggi. Cleaver, who broke into that sensational lead off the bike, struggled home with a 1:43:12 run that left her 6th in 4:36:10.

Ford Ironman 70.3 Florida
Disney World, Florida
May 15, 2011
S 1.2 mi. / B 56 mi. / R 13.1 mi.


Elite Men:

1. Andy Potts (USA) 3:53:14
2. Maxim Kriat (UKR) 3:57:10
3. David Kahn (USA) 3:58:13
4. Stanislav Krylov (RUS) 3:59:01
5. Andres Castillo (COL) 4:02:01
6. Kirill Kotsegarov (EST) 4:02:24
7. James Cotter (USA) 4:03:12
8. Andrew Hodges (USA ) 4:07:40
9. Brent Poulsen (USA) 4:07:44
10. Sebastian Pedraza (ITA) 4:08:25

Elite Women

1. Caitlin Snow (USA) 4:22:31
2. Nina Kraft (GER) 4:28:36
3. Heather Leiggi (USA) 4:32:14
4. Kristin White (USA) 4:33:49
5. Annie Gervais (CAN) 4:35:35
6. Anna Cleaver (NZL) 4:36:10
7. Heather Gollnick (USA) 4:38:30
8. Caroline Gregory (USA) 4:43:29
9. Stephanie Jones (USA) 4:45:48
10. Jenny Fletcher (CAN) 4:46:17