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Performances of the decade: Chrissie Wellington’s stunning world record in Roth

Wellington's time of 8:18:13 at the 2011 Challenge Roth is one that has yet to be matched.

Chrissie Wellington achieved unprecedented dominance in triathlon over a four-year period beginning in 2007, and perhaps nothing accentuates her performances through that stretch more than what she did at Challenge Roth in 2011.

Chrissie Wellington smashing the full distance world record at Challenge Roth in 2011.

Wellington first broke the full-distance world record in Roth in 2009, blowing past Yvonne van Vlerkin’s mark of 8:45:48 by nearly 14 minutes with her 8:31:59 finish. The following year, after breaking the 17-year-old Ironman World Championship course record the previous October, Wellington smashed her world-best time once again at the German race, this time finishing in 8:19:13.

Then, in 2011, shortly after lowering her Ironman-branded record in South Africa in April, the now 38-year-old went to Roth in July and set the triathlon world on fire once again.

The English native led the women out of the water in 49:49 and then had the fastest bike split of the day by 10 minutes, blasting a 4:40:39, to open up a 12-minute gap on her closest competitors heading onto the run.

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Wellington ran a blistering 2:44:35 marathon, incredibly bringing her to the finish in fifth place overall, breaking her world best time by exactly one minute — 8:18:13. Her run time was also an all-time record, improving on her 2:48:54 from the previous year, and only men’s winner Andreas Raelert, who also set a world record that day, had a faster run split.

Wellington’s record remains to this day, with Switzerland’s Daniela Ryf coming the closest after clocking 8:22:04 at the 2016 edition of Challenge Roth.