SA athlete steals Ironman victory

2010-04-26 14:57

South African triathlete Raynard Tissink has won the South African Ironman for the second time.

Tissink only took the lead in the last part of the race yesterday, overtaking Switzerland’s Mathias Hecht 20km into the run.

He was one of more than 1500 triathletes who flocked to Port Elizabeth to take part in this, the sixth, Ironman event.

With a gruelling 3.8km swim, a 180km cycle and a 42,2km run, the triathlon kept even the pros going for over eight hours.

Sonja Tajsich from Germany, who took second place last year, was the first woman to finish this year’s race.

Fundiswa “Jennifer” Mbanda (27) from East London competed in the Ironman for the third time. She said the water was very choppy, but the weather for the rest of the day was great, with sunny conditions. Finishing in just over 14 hours and 41 minutes said, “I’m feeling great, I can’t wait for the next one.”

Michael Flanagan, who reported on the event, called this year’s Ironman the “most exciting and riveting race Port Elizabeth has ever witnessed”.

Triathlons, consisting of a swim, ride and cycle, were experimented with in the seventies and gained huge popularity in the eighties. There are now over 24 Ironman events held around the world.

The provisional results are as follows:
Raynard Tissink (RSA) 08:23:28
Mathias Hecht (CHE) 08:28:53
Daniel Fontana (ITA) 08:33:48
Jason Shortis (AUS) 08:34:52
Stephen Bayliss (GBR) 08:40:28
Jan Raphael (NLD) 08:42:46
Max Renko (AUT) 08:51:19
Simon Billeau (FRA) 08:53:49
Aleksandar Sorensen-Markovic (DEN) 08:56:06
Brad Storm (RSA) 09:15:22
Sonja Tajsich (GER) 09:16:55
Caroline Steffen (CHE) 09:22:00
Tine Deckers (BEL) 09:29:58
Mirjam Weerd (NLD) 09:37:24
Sonja Jaarsveld (NLD) 09:42:20

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