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In Transition: 🏃‍♀️ Aussies rule

Aussies rule Melbourne 70.3, bigger gear for a better run, and have Ironman and Challenge made nice?

Good morning everyone!

Hope you all had a great weekend! With the colder temps descending here in Boulder, I spent some quality time on the indoor trainer. But, after a hot summer I am loving the cool fall running temps 😊

Did you race this weekend? Send us through your photos or a race recap, and we will feature them in the next edition!

In this edition we have a race breakdown from the action-packed Ironman 70.3 Melbourne, reasons why should cycle in a bigger gear, and some news between Ironman and Challenge.

Thank you for being here.

-Matt Sharpe, newsletter editor

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STANDINGS

World Triathlon Rankings

Table of data of race results
OFF TO THE RACES

OI OI OI: Aussie Dominance at 70.3 Melbourne

It was a battle down under between Australia and the rest. But who came out on top? Why, none other than the Aussies themselves.

Men's Race

What happened: In a somewhat chaotic race, veteran Australian Steve McKenna took home first place.

In the swim no one was able to establish a gap and eight athletes, including race favourite Steve McKenna, exited the water together. A group of seven athletes rolled together at the front of the race for the bike.

Onto the run, 70.3 rookie Charlie Quin (AUS) looked to be headed to a dominating win until he wasn’t. A significant blow up leading to a drop in pace allowed the veteran McKenna to blast past Quin and take the win and finish in 3:39:13 for the half ironman.

Key moment: Quin’s early dominance came back to bite him. At around 15km into the run he fell apart, allowing McKenna to easily run him down.

Podium: 

  • 1st - Steve McKenna (AUS)

  • 2nd - Charlie Quin (AUS)

  • 3rd - Nicolas Free (AUS)

Analysis: With a tightly packed swim group, someone needed to step up on the bike to stay away from the pedigree runners. However, the athletes weren’t willing to take the risk, and the runners were able to assert their dominance.

Other info: Although he may have pushed the run a bit hard, Charlie Quin was a spectacular second in his 70.3 debut.

Who’s up, who’s down: McKenna appears to be in great form as he builds towards Ironman Busselton. Mitchell Cunningham, a strong cyclist, couldn’t leverage his front pack bike position. He settled for 13th.

Women's race

What happened: Ellie Salthouse from Australia took first place in a spirited race that saw much back and forth between the athletes.

In a complete reversal from the men’s race, Lotte Wilms blasted away from her competitors in the swim. She exited the water with over a minute gap to Ellie Salthouse and began her push to stay away from the hard-charging aussie. Wilms did her best to maintain her lead on the bike, but was caught by Salthouse and Amelia Watkinson on the second lap of the bike. There would be no denying Salhouse as she powered away on the run to break the tape in a time of 4:03:19.

Key moment: Once Watkinson caught up to Salthouse on the bike they were able to work together and catch up to Wilms before the start of the run.

Podium: 

  • 1st - Ellie Salthouse (AUS)

  • 2nd - Amelia Watkinson (AUS)

  • 3rd - Lotte Wilms (NED)

Analysis: Being alone for the swim and a large portion of the bike was certainly unfavourable for Wilms. If she had a friend or two to support her in the bike, then she may have been able to stay away from perennial podium favourite, Salthouse.

Other info: Enough can’t be said of Wilms’ impressive swim. She was able to catch numerous pro men who started two minutes ahead of her!

After a disappointing finish at the Ironman 70.3 World Championships, Salthouse was able to bounce back with a solid win.

Other Results

World Triathlon World Cup, Viña Del Mar, Chile

  • Men’s race: David Castro Fajardo (ESP) outlasted a large group of men on the run to take the win. Diego Moya (CHI) delighted the hometown crowd finishing in second.

  • Women’s race: Sandra Dodet (FRA) took it to the field on the run as she was able to claim another World Cup victory. Ranked first for the race, Emy Legault (CAN) unfortunately suffered a crash on the bike and was unable to finish.

Upcoming Races

  • Steve McKenna, on his feelings before winning the 70.3 Melbourne. [TRI247]

ONE BIG THING

Ironman and Challenge Roth Align Race Dates for 2023

What is it:

The two largest long course events in Germany, Ironman Frankfurt, and Challenge Roth will now be contested on different weekends in 2023. Both races are iconic within the sport, and are huge events within Germany. Challenge Roth will be held on June 25th, 2023. Ironman Frankfurt (European Championships) will be held the following weekend on July 2nd, 2023.

Why It matters?

  • The events have previously conflicted and have fallen on the same weekend.

  • Having the same dates creates more certainty for stakeholders including athletes, media, and expo retailers.

  • It is clear there is healthy communication between two of the largest triathlon event organizers in the world.

Quick thought:

It is awesome to see Challenge and Ironman come together and make a decision in the greater interest of the sport. Having two massive and iconic long course events on the same weekend created confusion and unnecessary conflict between the two race organizers. Hopefully we can see more collaboration and mutually beneficial decisions between Challenge and Ironman in the future. Although with the rise of PTO and their events, that could certainly throw a wrench in the works.

NEWS

💰 Economic impact: Hotels, restaurants, and the city of St. George were all winners thanks to the thousands of athletes who flocked to the city for the 70.3 World Championships. [The Spectrum]

📈 Growth opportunity: Although Triathlon is somewhat of a mainstream sport now, there are still opportunities for growth in non-traditional Triathlon locations. The second edition of Ironman 70.3 Goa, India, which happened this past weekend shows this to be true. [Lokmat Times]

💭 Time for reflection: After breaking her elbow in the Toulouse Superleague Triathlon event, World Triathlon star Rachel Klamer reflects on the positives to come out of her broken elbow. [Tri-Today]

🙃 Flip the script: Usually long course stars don’t make the switch to short course. But don’t tell that to New Zealand’s Kyle Smith, who is aiming to make his country’s Olympic team in 2024. [Tri247]

✨ Adversity -> Opportunity. After losing her left leg to a roadside bomb while serving her country in Iraq, Melissa Stockwell made the transition to elite triathlon and hasn’t looked back. The Paralympian has her sights on Paris 2024, but first, the Paratriathlon World Championships in a few weeks. [Forbes]

TRAINING THOUGHT

Big Gear, Big Gains

A women cycling up a steep switchback climb

For triathletes, a typical cadence, or RPM, should be around 90-100 revolutions per minute (RPM). However, whether training or investing, diversification is key. And for triathletes, incorporating low cadence (bigger gear, lower RPM) intervals can pay dividends on race day.

Here's why:

🔎 Improve pedaling technique:

By slowing down the RPM’s, more attention can be paid to the pedal stroke and weak spots can be identified.

💪 Build muscular endurance:

When using a bigger gear, more muscle fibers will be activated and will eventually adapt to the training stimulus. Which creates more fatigue resistance!

👟 A better run: 

With more fatigue resistant muscles, the legs are able to come off the bike feeling fresher and ready to attack the run.

FAVOURITES

👼 Lionel Sanders Youtube: This episode, his first since Kona, Sanders discusses life as a new father, the changes in his routine, and he teases his final race of the year.

🌴 Short Chute Show: The Superleague gang break down the SLT Championship Grand Final in Neom, and provide insight on how the entire 2022 season played out.

🥐 Yann Le Meur sports science: I don’t know science, but this guy sure does! YLM breaks down a study that shows just how important morning carbs are to afternoon training.

QUIZ

This person has completed Ironmans across the world, and some might say with the help of divine intervention. Who is the religious figure famous for competing in numerous Ironman competitions?

Reply with your name and guesses and you could be featured in the next newsletter.

QUOTE OF THE DAY

When you have a dream, you've got to grab it and never let go.

Carole Burnett
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