Athletes Michellie Jones and Tim Deboom, along with contributors Kenneth Gasque and Jan War will be inducted into the Ironman Hall of Fame in October.
August 14, 2019 | NEWS|
As it did last year, Ironman has decided to induct four people into its Hall of Fame this year - two athletes and two "contributors." Two-time Ironman champion Tim Deboom and Olympic medalist and 2006 champion Michellie Jones will be inducted, as will Kenneth Gasque, the popular founder and former race director of Ironman Lanzarote, along with long-time Ironman World Championship swim director Jan War.
Michellie Jones is considered by many to be one of the most successful triathletes in history. She won the ITU World title twice (1992 and 1993), the Xterra world championship (1996) and took the silver medal at the 2000 Olympic Games. When she turned her sights on long-distance racing she won her debut Ironman race in Florida in 2004, finished second at the Ironman World Championship in 2005, then won Ironman Arizona and the Ironman World Championship in 2006. She was the first Australian woman to win in Kona. At Rio in 2016 Jones served as a guide for paratriathlete Katie Kelly, helping her take the gold.
"I didn’t think Ironman was ever going to be a path I would follow as it terrified and intimidated me,” Jones said in a press release. “But destiny led me to one of the highlights of my career and now, to be headed into the Ironman Hall of Fame in October, I am extremely honored and extremely privileged to what my sport has bestowed on me. I am truly grateful to all those that made my journey possible.”
Tim DeBoom is the last American to win the Ironman World Championship, taking an emotional win in 2001, just weeks after the 9/11 attacks and then defending his title a year later. He also finished on the podium in 1999 and 2000.
"As a professional athlete, it is really hard to see out of the moment and appreciate the accomplishments along the way. I was always just focused on the next event,” DeBoom said a release. “Now, having been removed from racing for quite a while, I am extremely proud of my career. Being inducted into the Ironman Hall of Fame and seeing my name next to all the other amazing members is an incredible honor and something I will cherish forever.”
Kenneth Gasque competed at the Ironman World Championship in 1985 (the first Dane to compete at the Ironman World Championship) and was struck by the similarities between the Big Island in Hawaii and his home in Lanzarote. Determined to host a full-distance event on the Canary Island, he was able to create Ironman Lanzarote in 1992. The event has become one of the most popular races in the world, renowned for its tough bike course. Gasque has always been a favorite with the athletes the event draws to the island, greeting and shaking hands with every finisher of the race. He retired as the official race director last year, but remains the honorary race director of Ironman Lanzarote.
Jan War has been a volunteer at the Ironman World Championship for almost 40 years and has served as the swim director for 32 years.
Ironman Hall of Fame Inductees
John and Judy Collins
Dr. Bob Laird
John MacLean / Gordon Haller / Lyn Lemaire
Team Hoyt - Rick and Dick Hoyt
Georg Hochegger / Helge Lorenz / Stefan Petschnig
Lori Bowden / Heather Fuhr
Lew Friedland / Peter Reid
Ken Baggs / Erin Baker / Rocky Campbell / Scott Molina
Tim DeBoom / Kenneth Gasque / Michellie Jones / Jan War