Llanos and Jackson awesome in Arizona

At Ironman Arizona Heather Jackson overcame her Kona woes by blasting to an impressive 8:39 finish, while Eneko Llanos ran his way to the men's title making it two-for-two at Ironman Arizona for the 41-year-old Spaniard.

| November 19, 2018 | NEWS

Heather Jackson flies on the bike at Ironman Arizona.

Heather Jackson flies on the bike at Ironman Arizona.

Photo >Christian Petersen/Getty Images for Ironman

After a tough day in Kona, American Heather Jackson rebounded from her 14th-place finish at the Ironman World Championship to come back with a resounding 8:39 win at Ironman Arizona. After a few years of struggling with stomach issues, Eneko Llanos took his second title at Ironman Arizona (2011) thanks to an impressive 2:47 marathon split.

Jackson is back

Heading into Kona this year many people felt Jackson was ready for a big day, but race day didn't go as expected and the woman who had enjoyed three consecutive top-five finishes ended up out of the top 10. Five weeks later, though, she rebounded in style with a big win in Tempe.

Meredith Kessler returned to Arizona a year after having baby MAK and led the women out of the water in 53:02 with Aussie Carrie Lester just a few seconds behind. Lester would blast to the front on the bike and led Jackson by almost six minutes through the halfway point of the ride. Lester started to fade over the final part of the ride and was just under two-minutes up on Jackson into T2, with American Skye Moench and Canadian Jen Annett arriving another five minutes later. Kessler arrived in T2 in fifth, just under 15 minutes down.

On the run Jackson steadily gained on the Australian, catching her at 18 km into the marathon before steadily pulling away and cruising to the win. Lester finished in an impressive 8:44 to take second, with Annett rounding out the podium in 8:51.

Llanos two-for-two in Tempe

The only other time Eneko Llanos raced at Ironman Arizona, in 2011, he won the race in under eight hours. While he wasn't quite as fast this year, the win will no-doubt be gratifying for the Spaniard who has struggled for a couple of years to achieve the results we're accustomed to seeing from the Spaniard.

Llanos was part of a seven-man group led by France's Nocholas Granet that came out of the water in just over 49 minutes. It wasn't long, though, before German super-biker Andreas Dreitz went to the front of the race. The German arrived into T2 with a lead of a minute over American TJ Tollakson and a five minute lead over Llanos, his countryman Clemente Alonso-McKernan and Great Britain's Philip Graves.

Dreitz would be caught early in the marathon by Tollakson, but gamely battled back to the front before being caught again by Tollakson at the halfway point of the marathon. In the meantime Llanos had been patiently biding his time and moved to the front of the race at around the 24 km point of the run. From there the Spaniard continued to pull away, running a 2:47 marathon to take the day. Tollakson would be passed by Alonso-McKernan, making it a Spanish one-two finish. Dreitz's 3:04 marathon split would move him down to ninth.

Eneko Llanos takes his second Ironman Arizona title.

Eneko Llanos takes his second Ironman Arizona title.

Photo >Christian Petersen/Getty Images for Ironman

Ironman Arizona | Women

November 18, 2018 | Tempe, Arizona

Name

Country

Overall

3.8 km Swim

180 km Bike

42.2 km Run

1

Heather Jackson

USA

8:39:18

0:57:33

4:35:26

3:00:49

2

Carrie Lester

AUS

8:44:13

0:53:06

4:37:42

3:07:41

3

Jenn Annett

CAN

8:51:29

1:03:54

4:35:14

3:07:35

4

Skye Moench

USA

8:58:28

0:57:07

4:41:30

3:14:17

5

Lesley Smith 

USA 

9:04:51

0:57:02

4:58:08

3:02:46

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Ironman Arizona | Men

November 18, 2018 | Tempe, Arizona

Name

Country

Overall

3.8 km Swim

180 km Bike

42.2 km Run

1

Eneko Llanos

ESP

8:04:24

0:49:48

4:21:52

2:47:31

2

Clemente Alonso-Mckernan

ESP

8:08:41

0:49:52

4:21:19

2:51:14

3

Tj Tollakson 

USA

8:09:53

0:51:53

4:14:39

2:59:16

4

David Plese

SVN

8:11:37

0:55:03

4:18:14

2:52:34

5

Nicholas Granet

FRA 

8:15:46

0:49:42

4:24:37

2:54:38

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