Blummenfelt and Lawrence take Ironman 70.3 Bahrain

Kristian Blummenfelt set a new world-best time of 3:29:04 in leading a Norwegian podium sweep, while Holly Lawrence signalled she's back with a sub-four finish at the Ironman 70.3 Middle East Championship.

| December 8, 2018 | NEWS

Kristian Blummenfelt flies to a 3:29:04 world-best time at the Ironman 70.3 Middle East Championship.

Kristian Blummenfelt flies to a 3:29:04 world-best time at the Ironman 70.3 Middle East Championship.

Photo >Simon Müller / spomedis

It was a Norwegian podium sweep at in Bahrain today as Kristian Blummenfelt, Gustav Iden und Casper Stornes ripped through the course at the Ironman 70.3 Middle East Championship. Holly Lawrence, in her first race since fracturing her ankle at Ironman 70.3 Oceanside in April, topped the women's field with a sub-four-hour clocking. 

Norwegian uber-biking

As they did at WTS Bermuda in April, the speedsters from Norway dominated the podium, but this time in a different order. Blummenfelt successfully defended his title, with Iden coming a close second and Stornes finishing a few more minutes behind. All three also finished faster than the previous world-best 70.3 time posted by Michael Raelert in 2009 (3:34:04).

Things started with Eric Watson leading the way out of the water, with favorites like Blumenfelt, Terenzo Bozzone (NZL), Andreas Raelert (GER), Stornes and Iden all between 30 and 60 seconds behind. Once on the bike the trio from Norway immediately pushed the pace, looking to fulfill the sub-two hour bike split they predicted they would look for ahead of time. Adam Bowden (GBR) came in 1:18 minutes behind in T2, with Matt Trautman (RSA), Milosz Sowinski (POL) and Andreas Raelert starting the run four and a half minutes after the trio.

It was Blummenfelt's amazing 1:06:58 run split (15 seconds faster than Iden) that netted him the title in a new world-best time of 3:29:04. Stornes rounded out the podium. Bowden hung in for fourth with Trautman rounding out the top five.

Lawrence defends her title

As is her typical race strategy, Lawrence led the way out of the water, with Aussie Ellie Salthouse about a minute back and Amelia Watkinson another 36 seconds behind. Once on the bike Lawrence really took it to the rest of the field, flying through a 2:10 bike split that put her 2:30 up on Salthouse starting the run. Fellow Brit Sarah Lewis rode her way into third, 3:48 behind, and posted the day's fastest half-marathon (1:18:41), but it wasn't enough to catch Lawrence. 

The 2016 Ironman 70.3 World Champion posted a 1:21:55 run split, which got her both a sub-four hour finish time (3:59:20) and to the line 53 seconds ahead of Lewis. Salthouse rounded out the top three.

Ironman 70.3 Middle East Championship | Men

December 8, 2018 | Manama, Bahrain

Name

Country

Overall

1.9 km Swim

90 km Bike

21.1 km Run

1

Kristian Blummenfelt

NOR

3:29:04

0:23:23

1:56:52

1:06:58

2

Gustav Iden

NOR

3:29:25

0:23:43

1:56:37

1:07:13

3

Casper Stormes

NOR

3:33:31

0:23:46

1:56:32

1:11:15

4

Adam Bowden

GBR

3:35:03

0:23:09

1:58:25

1:11:21

5

Matt Trautman

RSA

3:39:21

0:24:46

1:59:56

1:12:27

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Ironman 70.3 Middle East Championship | Women

December 8, 2018 | Manama, Bahrain

Name

Country

Overall

1.9 km Swim

90 km Bike

21.1 km Run

1

Holly Lawrence

GBR

3:59:20

0:24:21

2:10:43

1:21:55

2

Sarah Lewis

GBR

4:00:13

0:26:38

2:12:15

1:18:41

3

Ellie Salthouse

AUS

4:06:25

0:25:19

2:12:16

1:26:36

4

Frankie Sanjana

GBR

4:11:45

0:26:41

2:13:46

1:26:20

5

Anna Watkinson

RSA

4:13:17

0:25:43

2:18:36

1:24:01

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