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Jan Frodeno’s 70.3 Oceanside entry inspires huge pro contingent

Canadians Jackson Laundry and Lionel Sanders among top seeds at California event

Photo by: Kevin Mackinnon

Ironman 70.3 Oceanside has typically been the big professional season opener in North America, and this year won’t be any different as the event will feature huge professional fields. There are 73 pro men who have registered for the race, while 25 pro women are set to line up – both fields include some of the biggest names in the sport.

Frodo’s final year begins with a bang

Jan Frodeno announced his “farewell tour” – his final year of professional racing – a few weeks ago, ¬†and the first race on that schedule included Ironman 70.3 Oceanside. Who knows if so many of the pros wanted to have a shot at competing against the man many consider to be the one of the greatest of all time (GOAT), but in the end the field for the race is stacked. Defending men’s champion Jackson Laundry (CAN) will wear race number one, and he’s joined by fellow Canadian Lionel Sanders, who will hopefully be over his injuries sustained at Clash Miami last weekend.

Others in the field include 70.3 worlds runner-up Ben Kanute, Sam Long, and last weekend’s Miami winner, Jason West (all from the US), along with Denmark’s Miki Taagholt, defending World Triathlon Championship Series champion Leo Bergere (FRA) and … well, lots more 70.3 and Ironman champions.

Sodaro leads a stacked women’s field

Ironman world champion Chelsea Sodaro (USA) will open her season in California, too, taking on local favourite Holly Lawrence (who is from the UK, but lives in California). Canada’s Paula Findlay will be amongst the favourites heading into the race as well, along with American Jackie Hering. The race will also see the return of Great Britain’s Kat Matthews, who would have rolled into Kona as one of the favourites last year until she was hit by a car while training in Texas. Canadian super-runner Tamara Jewett is also entered.

You can see the full pro list here.