Heemeryck and Haskins super at Daytona International Speedway

Pieter Heemeryck and Sarah Haskins took an exciting race that featured a shortened course with laps around the iconic Daytona International Speedway at the inaugural Challenge Daytona.

| December 10, 2018 | NEWS

Sarah Haskins added another title to a successful 2018 season with the win at the inaugural Challenge Daytona.

Sarah Haskins added another title to a successful 2018 season with the win at the inaugural Challenge Daytona.

Photo >Jose Luis Hourcade

American Sarah Haskins came very close to leading from start to finish, while Belgium's Pieter Heemeryck stayed close enough to two of the sports premier cyclists and ran to the men's title at Challenge Daytona.

Weather woes

After Saturday's sprint and other side events enjoyed near perfect weather, race organizers were forced to modify the Challenge Daytona course due to sever storms that blew through the area on Sunday morning. An 800 m swim was followed by a 32 km bike and the regular 21.1 km run for the age group race, but even the shortened time frame wasn't enough to get everyone clear and out of the heavy rain before the end of the age group race.

The pros left at 12:45, competing over a modified course that included 1,600 m of swimming, 60 km of cycling around the famous Daytona International Speedway, the home of the Daytona 500, and a 13.2 km run.

Haskins dominates from the start

Sarah Haskins came out of the water with Lauren Goss as the pair enjoyed a 90-second lead over fellow Americans Meredith Kessler and Alicia Kaye. While Goss managed to sneak ahead of Haskins for a short time, it wasn't long before Haskins was in the lead and pulling clear of the rest of the field. Goss would eventually pull out of the race, which left Kaye in second coming into T2, with Kessler staying in the hunt in third.

Once on the run Haskins continued to dominate and crossed the line with a comfortable lead over Kaye, while Kessler rounded out the podium.

Mission accomplished for Heemeryck

Trailing Cameron Wurf by a spot in the Challenge Bonus standings, Pieter Heemeryck made the trip to Daytona in hopes of moving up to fourth in the standings. He achieved that and more.

Andy Potts led out of the water with fellow American John Kenny and Kiwi Dylan McNiece close behind. Once out on the track, though, it wasn't long before Wurf moved to the front. Wurf would eventually start to show the inevitable fatigue that comes from a runner-up finish at a full distance race a week before (he was second to Terenzo Bozzone at Ironman Western Australia) and saw Andrew Starykowicz blast by to open up a huge gap into T2.

Heemeryck had managed to stay close to the Australian into T2 and blew by, moving into second, within a few hundred meters of starting the run. It was then only a matter of time before he passed Starykowicz - he did that before the first half of the run was over and never looked back. Starykowicz, a huge fan of Nascar racing, seemed to enjoy his runner-up finish, while Brazil's Santiago Ascenso ran his way to third. 

Challenge Daytona | Women

December 9, 2018 | Daytona Beach, USA.

Name

Country

Overall

1.6 km Swim

60 km Bike

13.1 km Run

1

Sarah HASKINS

USA

2:42:51

0:20:36

1:29:08

0:50:53

2

Alicia KAYE

USA

2:47:58

0:22:05

1:30:59

0:52:28

3

Meredith KESSLER

USA

2:50:35

0:22:03

1:32:01

0:53:38

4

Laura MATHEWS

USA

2:53:50

0:24:09

1:33:21

0:53:03

5

Lisa ROBERTS

USA

2:57:33

0:27:04

1:35:33

0:52:14

Swipe me

Challenge Daytona | Men

December 9, 2018 | Daytona Beach, USA.

Name

Country

Overall

1.6 km Swim

60 km Bike

13.1 km Run

1

Pieter Heemeryck

BEL

2:27:45

0:20:28

1:20:39

0:44:52

2

Andrew Starykowicz

USA

2:28:57

0:20:54

1:17:25

0:48:19

3

Santiago Ascenso

BRA

2:29:44

0:20:47

1:22:06

0:44:49

4

Taylor Reid

CAN

2:31:40

0:20:39

1:22:30

0:46:21

5

Matthew Russell

USA

2:33:26

0:23:29

1:20:04

0:47:45

Swipe me