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Ryf wins Challenge Roth, Wellington’s record still stands

Daniela Ryf defended her title from last year at Challenge Roth yesterday, but the double Ironman world champion was unsuccessful in breaking Chrissie Wellington’s world record (set in 2011). After a year of non-stop racing and many major wins, the Swiss star has suffered from a back injury and was ultimately not in record-breaking shape come Sunday.

“Like I said before the race I didn’t think it would be realistic to get the record,” Ryf told reporters. “But that didn’t stop me trying. Sometimes you get a race where you can push it through and today was not easy and I really had to fight for it.”

Last year, Ryf competed in the famous race “for fun” and managed to pull out a 8:22:04 which put her about four minutes off of Wellington’s 8:18:13 full distance record. This year, her victory was clocked in 8:40:03 which still gave her in incredible 11-minute margin of victory over runner-up, Great Britain’s Laura Siddall.

Canadian Heather Wurtele, who headed to Roth as part of her “European tour” this summer, was given a penalty on the bike and ultimately decided to pull out of the race, keeping the bigger pictures in mind.

“I was super bummed, lost a good deal of my mojo… I know it looks lame to DNF, but sometimes you have to think bigger picture, and I’m allowing myself 1hr to feel bad about it!”

She posted a full description of the situation on her Facebook page:

On the men’s side, Bart Aernouts was the men’s champion. Full results can be found on the website.