Tim Don heads to Kona

A DNF at Ironman Copenhagen seemed to mark the end of Tim Don's remarkable comeback to racing, but it turns out he has qualified for Kona.

| August 22, 2018 | NEWS

Tim Don competes at Ironman Hamburg.

Tim Don competes at Ironman Hamburg.

Photo >Nils Flieshardt / spomedis

When Tim Don pulled out of Ironman Copenhagen on the weekend, it looked like his amazing comeback run for a spot at the Ironman World Championship was over. Last year, after setting a new Ironman-best time in Brazil, Don arrived in Kona as a man to watch. But a few days before the race he was hit by a car and broke his neck. A short film was made about his recovery - "The Man With the Halo" was an all-too-appropriate title considering Don had to wear a Halo that was screwed into his scull during his recovery.

A look at the latest "Kona Points Ranking" puts Don on the list to start in Kona in October. Turns out he had just enough points to eke out a spot thanks to his third place finish at the Ironman 70.3 World Championship in Chattanooga last year, a win at Ironman 70.3 Costa Rica and his ninth at Ironman Hamburg. Don needed some help, though, to get to the Big Island - based on the KPR standings, it looks like that help came in the form of Jonathan Shearon (who finished sixth in Hamburg) not accepting his spot.

The sad news is that Matthew Russell, who was involved in a horrendous crash during the Ironman World Championship last year and has faced his own challenges coming back, is one spot away from the Kona start line despite a third-place finish at Ironman Mont-Tremblant on the weekend.

 

A screenshot of the KPR standings on August 22, 2018.

A screenshot of the KPR standings on August 22, 2018.

Photo >Ironman.com

There has not been an official announcement of the final Kona start list, so Russell might in fact receive a spot, although in an interview after the race he wasn't sure he'd accept a spot this year if he was to qualify.