Mirinda Carfrae (AUS) stormed home on the run to claim victory in the world’s toughest one-day race at the GoPro IRONMAN World Championship in Hawaii in race record time (8h52m14s).
Carfrae’s win is the seventh consecutive year that an Australian has claimed the title and her second after previously winning in 2010 when she shared the title with fellow Australian Craig Alexander.
Carfrae came off the bike with an eight minute deficit to American Meredith Kessler but unleashed her weapon on the run to record the third fastest run split overall today of 2:50:39 which broke her own run record. Her overall time was also two minutes inside the women’s race record set by Chrissie Wellington in 2009.
“The weather was beautiful, we felt like we had a tail wind all the way out to Hawi, little head wind on the way home,” said Carfrae.
“I have to credit this victory to my long-time coach Siri Lindley, it feels so great to be back home. Also to my fiancé Tim O’Donnell. We’re getting married in two months, so I think I’ll be able to cover the wedding bill. And my ‘mummy’, she comes to this race every year and she’s obviously my biggest supporter – mum, I love you.”
Kessler maintained good form in the early stages but was never going to hold off the flying Carfrae caught her and leader Rachel Joyce (GBR) to win by five minutes with Australian-based Liz Blatchford, running under GBR colours, finishing an outstanding third in her Hawaii debut in 9:03:35.
Both Carfrae and Joyce got under the magical nine hour mark, a feat only achieved by four women.
“Unbelievable amazing day. Madam Pele was good to us today and I just had one of those days where you just don’t hurt,” said Carfrae.
“I felt amazing all day today I can’t believe it, I didn’t know I had a performance like that in me. I thought I would run around 2.50 if conditions were good.”
After overcoming a four minute penalty Kona debutant Blatchford ran her way onto the podium to complete an outstanding first full season in the endurance ranks.
Photo credit: Delly Carr / Sportshoot