Flora Duffy produced perhaps her most impressive win in recent memory as she dominated the field to win her third ITU World Series race in Hamburg today.
With only a 750 meter swim it was much harder for the better swimmers to open up a gap over the field and a large group of athletes started the bike together. With just 20km to ride you might have expected Flora to ride within the group as the likelihood of riding away from such a large group was slim ; but tell that to Flora !
Flora absolutely hammered the first part of the bike taking Kirsten Kasper (USA) and Jessica Learmoth (GBP) with her. Duffy did most of the work upfront and by 10km the three leaders had 26 secs over the chasing pack which was thinned out a bit due to a nasty crash going through transition at the end of the second lap.
Flora realised that if she was going to enter T2 with a cushion she would need to up the pace and using her superb technical skills on the bike she slowly distanced herself from her two companions and entered T2 with around 20 secs on them and over 40 secs on the chasing pack.
With just 5km to run and such a cushion there was no doubt that Flora, with her much improved run, was never going to be challenged. In the end she ran one of the fastest run times to win her first ITU World Series SPRINT DISTANCE event in 59 minutes flat.
Behind Flora, Ashley Gentle of Australia posted the fastest run time of 16:10 to take silver in 59:31 with Germany’s Laura Lindemann having a breakthrough race to finish 3rd in 59:41 holding of Katie Zaferes of the USA by one second.
To ride away virtually solo over 20km against a field of world series triathletes shows just how dominant Flora is at the moment.
Flora’s win took her to 4th place in the world rankings having raced 1 or 2 races less then the top three. Another win will likely take up to the top of the rankings.
For full results go to http://www.triathlon.org