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Swallow and Van Lierde win in South Africa

Blake gets 12th.

Great Britain’s Jodie Swallow and Belgium’s Frederik Van Lierde battled rain, wind, and chilly temperatures to earn their victories today at Ironman 70.3 South Africa.

Swallow, the reigning Ironman 70.3 World Champion, led right from start, as her 25:16 swim was tops among the women (fifth overall), and that established a lead that was good enough to stay ahead of the rest of the women for the win (4:39:19). Belgium’s Tine Deckers trailed Swallow by close to seven minutes after the swim but used the top bike split (2:37:48) and the second best run (1:28:06) to climb up into second (4:42:25). South Africa’s Mari Rabie, the defending champion and course record holder, finished third in 4:45:45.

After exiting the water in second, just 2 seconds behind Balazs Csoke (24:58), Van Lierde took control of the race with the top bike ride of the day (2:18:18), and then ran 1:19:21 (fifth best run) for the win (4:06:30). South Africa’s James Cunnama had the best half marathon of the day (1:14:22) to grab second (4:08:41), the same position he finished in last year, and Italy’s Alessandro Degasperi (4:15:16) finished third.

Victoria’s Jasper Blake started with a 27:48 swim (17th) then steadily moved through the field with a 2:35:20 bike, and a 1:23:14 run (4:30:17) to get into 12th (4:30:17).

“Definitely not one to write home about today at SA 70.3,” said Blake on Twitter. “Effort was there, speed not. Got a thumping but I suppose it’s a start.”

Top 10 Men

1. Van Lierde, Frederik (BEL)  4:06:30

2. Cunnama, James (RSA)  4:08:41

3. Degasperi, Alessandro (ITA)  4:15:16

4. Cunningham, Richie (AUS)  4:18:12

5. Csoke, Balazs (HUN)  4:18:51

6. Jameson, Toby (GBR)  4:19:31

7. Sundberg, Swen (GER)  4:22:50

8. Strijk, Erik (NED)  4:23:17

9. De Villiers, Hendrik (RSA)  4:24:44

10. Storm, Brad (RSA) 4:26:28

12. Blake, Jasper (CAN)  4:30:17

Top 10 Women

1. Swallow, Jodie (GBR)  4:39:19

2. Deckers, Tine (BEL)  4:42:25

3. Rabie, Mari (RSA)  4:45:45

4. Zelenkova, Lucie (RSA)   4:49:51

5. Tajsich, Sonja (GER)  4:51:26

6. Riesler, Diana (GER)  4:56:15

7. Gorrie, Natasha (RSA)  5:05:10

8. Horner, Claire (RSA)  5:06:57

9. Ferreira, Samantha (RSA)  5:10:35

10. Spong, Samantha (RSA)  5:11:03