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Mel McQuaid takes fourth, Matt Sharpe gets fifth at 70.3 Waco

Despite crashing on the bike, former Xterra world champ rallies for fourth-place finish

Photo by: Photo: Alex Bierens de Haan/Getty Images for Ironman

Melanie McQuaid’s amazing race season continues – the 49-year-old from Victoria took fourth at Ironman 70.3 Waco on the weekend despite crashing on the bike (see her Instagram post below). In 2022 the ageless three-time Xterra world champion (2003, 2005 and 2006) and two-time World Triathlon Cross Triathlon world champion (2011 and 2017) has also finished third at Ironman Wisconsin, fifth at Ironman Lake Placid and sixth at Ironman 70.3 Mont-Tremblant. McQuaid had flatted the day before the race and struggled with the grip of the new tires she put on her bike for race day.


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A post shared by Melanie McQuaid (@melradcoaching)

Photo: Josh Miller/ Getty Images for Ironman

The race was won by Japanese two-time Olympian Ai Ueda, who stepped up to long-distance racing this year, competing in a number of 70.3 and Ironman races, taking seventh at Ironman Texas and eighth at Ironman Ireland. Prior to the win in Texas, Ueda’s best 70.3 finish at been a fifth-place finish at Ironman 70.3 Geelong. Ueda ran her way to the win thanks to the day’s fastest run split – 1:21:22, finishing in 4:19:16. American Sarah Bishop took second (4:25:12), with France’s Julie Iemmola rounding out the podium in 4:28:00.

Photo: Mel McQuaid Instagram/ Topher Riley

McQuaid finished the swim just a couple of seconds ahead of Ueda (29:06), rode almost 40 seconds faster (2:22:35) despite the crash, then finished her day with a 1:34:41 run for a final time of 4:32:47. She’ll next compete at Ironman Arizona next month.

Matt Sharpe. Photo: Clash-Endurance/ Eric Wynn

Sharpe takes fifth

American Trevor Foley, a former NCAA track runner, was well back after the swim – Canadian Matthew Sharpe led the way out of the water in 24:13 (with fellow Canadian Brennan Smith just four seconds back at the end of the 1.9 km opening leg), with Foley exiting the water in 28:17, 4:03 behind.

American Justin Metzler, who came out of the water in the same time as Sharpe, led off the bike, but Foley had moved to fifth place, just 34 seconds back, after a blazing 2:01:26 bike split. Sharpe was 5:36 behind Metzler, entering T2 in eighth, with Canadian Cody Sahlstrom in 20th spot and Smith in 23rd starting the run.

There was no touching Foley, who flew through a 1:11:18 split to take th win in 3:45:58, with Metzler finishing in 3:49:15 and Andy Potts rounding out the podium in 3:51:07.

Sharpe used a 1:14:03 run split to take fifth in 3:54:09.Sahlstrom finished 22nd in 4:30:09. while Smith didn’t finish the run.

Ironman festival

About 1,700 athletes took part in the two Ironman events taking place in Waco this weekend – 1,309 participated in the 70.3 race on Sunday, while 380 competed in the Ironman event on Saturday.

Photo: Josh Miller/ Getty Images for Ironman

Top five professional men’s results:

1. Trevor Foley USA 00:28:17 02:01:26 01:11:18 03:45:58
2. Justin Metzler USA 00:24:13 02:05:08 01:14:31 03:49:15
3. Andy Potts USA 00:24:21 02:05:13 01:16:03 03:51:07
4. Martin Ulloa CHL 00:25:32 02:04:02 01:17:59 03:52:39
5. Matthew Sharpe CAN 00:24:13 02:10:45 01:14:03 03:54:09

Top five professional women’s results:

1. Ai Ueda JPN 00:29:04 02:23:04 01:21:22 04:19:16
2. Sarah Bishop USA 00:33:48 02:18:41 01:26:53 04:25:12
3. Julie Iemmola FRA 00:27:15 02:22:45 01:32:14 04:28:00
4. Melanie McQuaid CAN 00:29:06 02:22:35 01:34:41 04:32:47
5. Sierra Snyder USA 00:28:59 02:32:10 01:31:15 04:38:49