Copyright – 2016 – Victoria Sports News
Canadians and locals dominated the Victoria Ironman 70.3 that took place at Elk Lake on Sunday, June 12th. The top five female and the top five male finishers that raced in the professional category were all Canadians, led by Caledon, Ontario’s Taylor Reid and Kelowna’s Heather Wurtele.
Reid led all pro men, finishing in the time of three-hours, 49-minutes and 10 seconds. Rounding out the top-five were, Vancouver’s Nathan Killam in fifth, Victoria’s Elliot Holtham who finished fourth, Stephen Kilshaw, finished third, he is also from Victoria and Kelowna’s Trevor Wurtele finished second. He is the husband of Heather Wurtele the women’s winner.
There was just a seven minute gap between first and fifth and 46 seconds between Reid and Wurtele, which is a close race considering the length of the event.
Reid split 00:18:54 in the swim, 2:09:28 on the bike and 1:18:40 on the run, to earn 3500 series points.
American Matt Lieto was the first non-Canadian, finishing in sixth position. He had a one second lead off the swim, while Reid and Kilshaw exited the water together. It was on the bike where Reid made some separation, having the fastest bike split of the pro field by nearly a minute. Wurtele and Kilshaw were gaining on Reid on the run; however, they ran out of real estate and finished second and third, respectively.
Victoria’s Adam O’Meara finished 10th in 4:01:02.
The first pro woman, Wurtele, who finished in the time of 4:13:06, was followed in by former international middle-distance runner Malindi Elmore in second, who clocked in at 4:19:35 they both live and train in Kelowna. The top five women were rounded out by Jen Annett in third, who crossed the line at Hamsterly Beach in the time of 4:23:38. She is from Penticton. Rachel McBride – the Purple Tiger – who is known as a powerful cyclist finished fourth. She is from Vancouver.
Wurtele’s splits were 00:19:57, 02:25:42 and 01:24:51.
In the women’s race there appeared to be little in the way of tactics, Wurtele was first out of the water by half a minute. With her strong bike split – the second fastest woman – there was no catching her. Elmore, who ran over minute faster than the next fastest runner, just couldn’t make up the difference.
The swim at Elk Lake was shortened to 1500-metres.
The Series makes stops in Saskatoon twice, Shawnigan Lake, Vancouver and Whistler twice. Whistler hosts Ironman Canada, the annual national championships for the sport. The annual world ironman championships take place in Hawaii in Kailua-Kona.
Victoria has a long history of producing top finishes in Hawaii including three-time winner Peter Reid and two-time winner Lori Bowden. Brent McMahon is a multi-time 70.3 champion and has won Ironman Arizona.
Expect to see many of these athletes October 8, 2016 at the world championships, including McMahon.