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Pro triathlete makes his predictions for the Ironman 70.3 World Championship

Canadian professional triathlete Antoine Jolicouer Desroche makes his top-five predictions for St. George

Photo by: Kevin Mackinnon

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The Ironman 70.3 World Championship in St. George, Utah takes place this weekend. Following the announcement that the Ironman World Championship has been postponed to February, 2022, the 70.3 world championship has become the priority for the year 2021 for several triathletes.

The caliber is very high in both the women’s and men’s races. However, some triathletes with chances to win, or at least to get on the podium, will not be present. Here are some of the triathletes who will not be taking part in the 70.3 worlds:

For the women:

  • Flora Duffy
  • Anne Haug
  • Paula Findlay

For the men:

  • Jan Frodeno
  • Lionel Sanders
  • Rudy Von Berg
  • Alistair Brownlee
  • Javier Gomez
  • Sebastian Kienle
  • Patrick Lange

Despite the absence of these triathletes we can still expect a very exciting race! Here are my predictions for the Top 5 for women and men:


  1. Taylor Knibb (pictured above)
  2. Lucy Charles-Barclay
  3. Daniela Ryf
  4. Emma Pallant-Browne
  5. Chelsea Sodaro

In my opinion, Taylor Knibb  will continue her winning momentum and win the Ironman 70.3 World Championship. Since her return from the Olympic Games she finished second at Ironman 70.3 Boulder, took second at WTCS Montreal, went on to win the World Triathlon Championship Series Final in Edmonton and delivered a dominant performance at the Collins  Cup. On the other hand, to be able to beat the likes of Lucy Charles-Barclay, Daniela Ryf  and Emma  Pallant-Browne, she will have to be a few minutes ahead at the beginning of the run. She will, therefore, have to get away on the bike, which she is definitely able to do. Daniela  Ryf recently won Ironman Switzerland, showing that her performance at the Collins Cup was due to an off day and that she is back in top form. On the other hand, you have to wonder if she has recovered completely from Ironman effort. That’s why I believe she will finish third.

Kristian Blummenfelt on the run at the 2019 Ironman 70.3 World Championship in Nice, France.


  1. Kristian Blummenfelt
  2. Gustav Iden
  3. Daniel Baekkegard
  4. George Goodwin
  5. Sam Appleton

In my opinion, by the end of the swim several triathletes will lose their chance to finish in the top 5. This includes Sam Long, who despite his undeniable talent in cycling and running, will not be able to catch up with the “peloton” in front. It will be very difficult for a triathlete to escape by bike, but possibly Magnus Ditlev  and Maurice Clavel will be able to finish the bike a few seconds ahead of the “peloton” composed of the two Norwegians,  Baekkegard  and Sam Appleton. I believe George  Goodwin  will either be at the end of this group or less than a minute behind.

Baekkegard and Goodwin are possibly the only two people able to race alongside the two Norwegians, but I believe they will be alone in front towards the end of the bike. Although Gustav Iden won the 70.3 world championship in Nice, it’s very difficult not to consider Kristian Blummenfelt as the favourite. The latter will accelerate in the last descent with only 3 to 5 km to go to win the race and thus add another victory to his incredible year!