This weekend saw the inaugural Ironman Lanzarote 70.3 competition taking place out of Club La Santa and over 600 athletes took to the lagoon and roads to battle their own stamina levels and the Lanzarote trademark wind. But it was the Dutch Danne Boterenbrood and Spain’s Ivan Raña Fuentes who took everyone by surprise and completed in top times for the women and the men respectively.
It was tough going all the way for athletes as they faced incessant strong winds throughout the competition and gaps in the places soon opened up, favouring those who have spent time training on the island and getting to grips with its challenges.
The day dawned chilly and cloudy with wet roads as a result of rain during the night, a very uncharacteristic scene for Lanzarote. Far more characteristic were the strong winds that greeted the athletes as they took to the water for the first leg of the race, the swim. First out of the water for the men was Rasmus Petraeus in a time of 21mins 51secs, followed by Pedro Miguel Reig and Peru Alfaro in third place. At this stage, Ivan Raña emerged in 7th place with a time of 22:18.
On the challenging bike ride it was Ronnie Schildknecht who notched up the fastest time of 2:24:26, a performance which would ultimately net him second place. Next onto the run transition was Boris Stein in a time of 2:26:27. With the sun now deciding to join the fun and notching up the afternoon’s heat, Ivan Raña finished his ride in third place with an impressive time of 2:27:44. But it was the run that finally clinched it for Ivan who romped home in first place with a time of 1:13:27 giving him an overall time of 4:07:36 and Ironman Lanzarote 70.3 victory.
It was a different story for the women where Danne Boterenbrood emerged from the water in first place with a time of 24mins 06secs and held onto her overall lead by finishing second to Sophie de Groote on the bike section in a time of 2:44:56. On the final run she came in sixth place and almost six minutes behind Katja Konschak’s impressive finishing time of 1:20:47 but still managed to hold onto that winning place with an overall time of 4:40:06.
Serving as a qualifier and early training outing for Ironman Lanzarote, the half distance 70.3 is the latest addition to the Ironman calendar and consists of a 1.9km swim, a 90.1km bike ride and a 21.1km run. Places were full within two months of registration opening, showing once again the popularity of Lanzarote as a top sporting destination.
27 athletes chose to stay at Sands Beach Resort for the competition, including Danne and Ivan who took top places on the podium. There is no doubt that athletes who train on Lanzarote generally fare better than those who don’t in this gruelling competition, especially when it comes to the bike ride section where the wind plays such an important part in separating the field. The famous, or should that be infamous, Tabayesco 10km climb half way through the course is a challenge at the best of times but with strong winds thrown into the equation it presents an energy-sapping nightmare.
Our own super couple and Sands Beach Active guests, Stephen and Bella Bayliss finished in 11th and 9th positions respectively while our current Lanzarote Ironman title holder and Sands Beach Resort sponsored athlete, Victor Del Corral, came home in 5th position. Finishing in an overall time of 6:26:52 was our own Sands Beach Resort Chief Executive Juan Carlos Albuixech which, considering he had spent the week at the exhausting World Travel Market in London, was no mean feat. Special mention goes to our lifeguard, Andres Cuello, who took first place in the Lanzarote residents.
Huge congratulations go to Ivan, Danne and all the triathletes who made the first Ironman Lanzarote 70.3 such a success and we look forward to seeing you next year on 5th October 2013 to do it all again.