An exciting weekend on the Big Island wrapped up a couple of weeks ago, but everyone’s still talking about what went down on race day. As much as I planned on getting personal stories from our Colorado pros, I realized that most of them are on much-deserved vacations and enjoying a quick bout of downtime. Knowing this, I finally decided to briefly recap what happened both from being glued to the Kona coverage and by talking to people who were actually there. Congrats to all of the pros and good luck on your next races because, let’s be honest, you are already out training for your next event!
Joyce, Blatchford are Queens of Kona
Rachel Joyce, 2nd
All I can say is Rachel is consistently brilliant in Kona and the rest of her races too. The Brit, who was with the lead pack from start to finish, used her strength on the marathon to run down almost everyone who was in front of her and claim the second place spot on the podium for the second time in her illustrious career. Once again, Joyce proves that she can withstand the Kona heat and pressure and remain one of the greats on race day!
Liz Blatchford, 3rd
We love that Liz comes to Colorado for the summers to train after her IRONMAN Cairns win and it seems to keep paying off. The blazing Blatchford turned in the fastest women’s run time of the day and picked off a slew of her competitors to grab the final podium spot. Another consistently great performer in Kona, Blatchford was all smiles as she crossed the finish line and we can definitely understand why!
Mary Beth Ellis, 13th
Although she’s training over in Europe these days, the Boulder-based Ellis looked great as she swam and rode with the leaders for much of the day. Unfortunately, Ellis couldn’t hold on to her lightning quick pace and fell back a little during the run. All in all, Ellis has had a great year, filled with victories and we know that even though this wasn’t her year in Kona, the honey badger will be back on top soon!
Dede Griesbauer, 22nd
It wasn’t an easy road to Kona for Griesbauer who suffered a serious wreck earlier this summer when she was hit by a truck on the IRONMAN Coeur D’Alene bike course. However, anyone who knows her is aware that she is tough as nails and that the Kona conditions wouldn’t stand in her way of a top-25 performance. Griesbauer, who was in the lead group behind Jodie Swallow on the swim, stayed in the hunt on the bike before a serious side-stitch forced her to walk the first two miles of the run. Once she felt better, Griesbauer hit the pavement running and finished out her tough journey like a pro!
Even though Carfrae was unable to finish the race, I am confident in saying that her fourth world title is probably still out there. Carfrae was hit on a training ride the day before a race, causing her severe back pain, which ended her Kona race in the middle of the bike. We’re not sure how she’s doing now, but we hope her Napa vacation helped her heal up quickly!
O’Donnell Tops the Podium
Tim O’Donnell, 3rd
Finally. I got to interview O’Donnell before he left for Kona and I could see the intensity and fire in his eyes as he talked about taking this year more seriously than ever. After a tough day in Kona last year, O’Donnell displayed his fitness and took an aggressive lead on the bike over the stacked field of competitors, turning in the second fastest bike time on the day. O’Donnell was able to stay strong on the run and grab the final podium spot, turning in the performance he knew he was capable of having on the sport’s biggest stage.
Andy Potts, 4th
After watching him torch the competition on a smokin’ hot day in Coeur D’Alene, it is no surprise that Potts was in the hunt for the win all day. He looked strong and confident as he stayed in the front on each event as the Kona heat began to rise. In the end, Potts was still standing—and running—strong and able to repeat a fourth place performance.
Tyler Butterfield, 5th
I don’t think anyone had a bigger smile on their face at the finish than Tyler Butterfield. I actually saw Butterfield running around Boulder on numerous occasions this summer and, man, did he look strong, which is why it was no surprise that he turned in such a phenomenal performance.
Tim Don, 15th
In only his second IRONMAN race ever, “The Don” wasn’t able to produce the win like he did in his first IRONMAN (yeah, he won IRONMAN Mallorca last year in his first stab at the distance), but he turned in a solid showing. Despite serving a bike penalty, Don turned in a Kona day that most people would kill for and we are guessing the former Olympian will be on top of some podiums before we know it.
I do not have any real information on the rest of the men who crossed the finish line in Kona, but I didn’t want to leave them out. Everyone knows the test that Kona provides on race day so a huge congrats to these guys for taking the Big Island head on!
Ben Hoffman, 27th
Justin Daerr, 28th
Kyle Buckingham, 30th
Tim Van Berkel, 36th
Matt Chrabot, 37th
The king of cupcakes called it a day after the bike and, based on his Facebook page, it just seemed like he wasn’t feeling too great on race day. We hope to see Millward racing soon and definitely see more Cupcakes with Cal segments!
I saw some pictures of Ambrose on social media and can say that the two bike wrecks he had in Kona are definitely going to leave a mark. Ambrose tried to tough it out after one wreck, but the second one seemed to have gotten the best of him. On a positive note, Ambrose is newly engaged so he definitely has something to celebrate. Congrats, Paul!
Although Colorado Triathlete is all about our Colorado pros, it’s hard to leave out some amazing age-group finishes that I know about. I am sorry that I don’t know every age-grouper in Colorado that competed in Kona, but I had to share these ridiculously great performances.
Colleen DeReuck, 10:30:41, 1st in age-group
Ivan O’Gorman, 9:22:09, 8th in age-group
Darren DeReuck, 11:10:50, 71st in age-group
|William P||Ankele Jr||M60-64||Denver||11:59:18||1:14:57||7:16||6:02:47||8:57||4:25:23|