Chrissie Wellington, a 13-time undefeated ironman distance Champion, and four-time Ironman World Champion (2011, 2009, 2008, 2007), announced her retirement from professional ironman distance racing today.
Wellington, stunned the triathlon world with her debut Ironman World Championship win in 2007, and holds world record performances at the Ironman distance.
In 2001, she clocked 8:33:56 (51:40, 4:45:23, 2:52:54) at Ironman South Africa in 2011, and 8:18:13 at Challenge Roth (49:49, 4:40:39, 2:44:35).
Here is some of what she wrote on her website today:
“Over the past 12 months I have had time to reflect and think, about my past and, of course, also of my future. Being a professional ironman athlete has been one of the greatest experiences of my life. I have achieved more than I could have ever imagined, and been so fortunate to travel to some beautiful places, compete against the best in the world, and forge many lasting friendships. Those life-changing experiences and memories will stay with me forever.
As an athlete I sought ‘the perfect race’. That race within myself where I dug to the depths mentally and physically, and that hard-fought race with my competitors. The World Ironman Championships in 2011 was the icing on the cake for me as an athlete. It was my ‘perfect race’ and it ‘completed’ me.
My passion for the sport hasn’t waned, but my passion for new experiences and new challenges is what is now burning the most brightly. Hence, I have got to the point where I know that it is right for me to retire from professional ironman distance racing. Needless to say this decision has not come easy, but deep in my heart I know it is the right thing for me to do. My future will, of course, involve sport and triathlon – but it will no longer be the axis around which my entire life revolves.
I will keep everyone updated on my future plans via my website -www.chrissiewellington.org and twitter – @chrissiesmiles.”
Read the rest at Chrissie’s Website – A New Beginning.
And a slightly different post on her blog – Announcements, nervousness and new beginnings.
Here is Chrissie speaking to Triathlon Magazine Canada editor Kevin Mackinnon during her appearance in Toronto to promote her book – A Life Without Limits.