Gustav Iden ran away from Alistair Brownlee to capture the Ironman 70.3 World Championship in Nice.
September 8, 2019 | RACES|
Whenever asked about the men's race here in Nice, I have been consistent all week: Alistair Brownlee is going to rip things apart when the climbs start at 10 km and the day will be decided by who goes with him.
It's nice to be right.
The men's race at the Ironman 70.3 World Championship promised to be a barn burner, with a stacked field that seem set to put on an incredible show. The huge crowds assembled here in Nice were hardly disappointed. Right from the start things got interesting as 10-time world champ Javier Gomez picked a spot way over to the right (exactly the same place Lucy Charles picked yesterday), while Brownlee and the rest of the fast swimmers went way over to the left.
In the end Gomez came out of the water in about seventh place, amongst a huge pack of 16 that was led by Australia's Josh Amberger and included Brownlee, Americans Ben Kanute and Rodolphe Von Berg, along with Norway's Gustav Iden and Kristian Blummenfelt.
That group stayed together through the first 10 km of the bike and then, as predicted, the fireworks began. Brownlee blasted up the hill and was 40 seconds up on Iden through 36 km of the bike, with Kanute 44 seconds back and Von Berg just under a minute behind. Then it was Von Berg's turn to press and the American, who spent time here in Nice when he was younger, blasted to the front by 61 km and then flew down the technical descent to completely blow the race apart. Only Brownlee and Iden were able to stay close to the American into T2 - Kanute was over three minutes down, Blummenfelt trailed by almost five minutes, as did Andrew Starykowicz. Sebastian Kienle was just over six minutes down in 11th as he started the run, with Gomez a couple more spots and seconds back in 13th.
Out on the run course it initially looked like Brownlee was set to take over the pacing, but Iden was having none of it - leading the way through the first turnaround at 6 km by a couple of seconds, then opening up a gap of 1:21 on Brownlee by the 10.8 km point. The race for the win was, by then, pretty much over - Iden flew through a 1:08:10 half-marathon split to claim the world title, with Brownlee running a 1:10:43 to take second for the second year in a row at the 70.3 worlds. Von Berg ran a great 1:12:15 to nail the final spot on the podium, while Blummenfelt's 1:09:59 was enought to get him fourth. Kienle showed he is ready for a great day in Kona thanks to a 1:09:31 split that moved him to fifth.
Ironman 70.3 World Championship | Pro Men
September 8, 2019 | Nice, France
1.9 km Swim
90 km Bike
21.1 km Run
Rodolphe Von Berg