Tyler Butterfield produced arguably the best performance of his triathlon career as he put together the perfect race to win Ironman Cozumel.
Fresh from his victory at the Ironman Cozumel 70.3 (half ironman ) just a few weeks ago, showed just how much he likes this course, and the heat, as he clocked a very impressive overall time of 7hrs 44 mins 01 secs to become one of just a handful of triathletes to break the 7 hrs 45 mins barrier for the 4km swim , 180km bike and 42km run.
Tyler started solidly emerging from the water in 42 min 10 secs just 3 mins off the lead in 15th place but well in touch with his main rivals that included Tim O’Donnell who finished 2nd in October in the Ironman World Championships.
After a solid 4hr 19 mins 14 secs bike Tyler after a quick transition left T2 still some 8 min 54 secs behind race leader, Austria’s Michael Weiss.
It recent races, including Ironman Florida, Tyler has shown excellent running form and it soon became evident that he was going to produce something special for the 42km as he started to reel off between 3min 30 secs and 3min 50 secs kilometers whislt the 8 athletes ahead of him were running at between 4min and 4 min 20 sec pace.
By mile 17 Tyler had overtaken Weiss and gradually distanced himself from the Austrian recording a very impressive 2hr 38 min 29 secs for the marathon. Few triathletes have gone below the 2hr 40 mark for the marathon in an Ironman so his run was outstanding and overall this was an eye opening performance. Weiss was 2nd today with Mario de Elias 3rd.
Tyler was watched by his wife Nicky and four children who made the journey to Cozumel and what a proud moment it was for the Butterfield family today.
In recent years Tyler has had some impressive Ironman 70.3 results but has largely failed to reproduce the form that saw him finish 5th in the Ironman World Championships a few years ago. His performance today qualifies Tyler for the Ironman World Championships 2020 in October in Kona, Hawaii and this result could well be the inspiration and confidence boost he needs to aim for (perhaps!!) his last big chance to make the top three at the World Championships, something which many leading triathletes and former world champions say he is capable of achieving.
But for now he can bask in the glory of a stunning performance in Cozumel and a bit of R and R with the family !
Feb 21 – 29, 2020 – JASPER BLAKE AND MIKE NEILL BERMUDA TRIATHLON CAMP
This popular camp run by Victoria based coaches and former professional triathletes Jasper Blake and Mike Neill has been running for 10 years and always attracts a large number of local, and the occasional overseas, triathletes. Look out for details. Sessions are run early mornings, lunchtimes and evenings during the week with other weekend sessions and this camp is for beginners up to experienced triathletes.
Feb 22 or 29, 2020 – Bermuda Triathlon Association Annual Prize Giving Dinner
BE ON HAND FOR A GREAT EVENING IN WHICH THE BTA RECOGNIZE ITS NATIONAL CHAMPIONSHIP WINNERS AND AWARDS ARE HANDED OUT FOR VARIOUS CATEGORIES SUCH AS MOST IMPROVED AND BEST NEWCOMER TRIATHLETES AND SENIOR AND JUNIOR TRIATHLETES OF THE YEAR.
THERE IS ALSO ALWAYS AN OUTSTANDING GUEST SPEAKER FROM THE WORLD OF TRIATHLON AND A RAFFLE AND AUCTION. LOOK OUT FOR DETAILS.
St.George’s today ( Monday 4th November) hosted the Bank of Bermuda Foundation Triathlon but in its new team relay format.
The exciting new format saw teams of 2 adults and 2 juniors (aged 8-16) as well as school teams compete in a relay format with each competitor completing a 200 meter swim, 4.5km bike and 1.2 km run.
The Open Category was won by the team of Fenella Wightman, Tommy Marshall, Jessie Marshall and Nick Pilgrim. First School team (and second overall) was composed of Warwick’s Daria Desmond, Callum MacFarland, Bella Howes, and Rory Fleming. And the winner of the Family category was Dominic Wright, Jacob Wright, Caroline Wright, and Adam Hopkin.
Tyler Butterfield produced a strong race on Saturday in the Florida Ironman to finish 7th overall in 8hrs 5 mins 38 secs.
Tyler, along with eventual winner Joe Skipper of the UK trailed ,the leaders out of the swim by around 2 1/2 minutes with a 53 minutes flat time. Skipper, a strong cyclist, began to make inroads into the leaders but Tyler was unable to match that pace, recording a 4 hr 21min 42 sec 180km bike to Skipper’s 4:05:51.
Tyler did however produce the 3rd fastest run time completing the marathon in 2:42:48 but he had too much time to make up to break into the top three.
Skipper clocked 2:39:01 for the run to take the win in 7:46:28 over Ben Hoffman who despite the fastest run of the day (2:36:09) gave up too much time to Skipper on the bike and finished in 7:48:29.
Andrew Starykowicz had a very fast 4:01:19 for the bike which gave him over 8 minutes over Skipper going into the run but he is to a renowned runner and his 2:58:36 run dropped him into 3rd place.
Zoe Roberts almost competed for Bermuda finishing a very creditable 26th in her 40-44 age group.
Bermuda’s Tyler Butterfield will be on the start line tomorrow, Saturday 2nd November, at Ironman Florida as he looks to qualify for the 2020 Ironman World Championships in Kona, Hawaii in October of next year.
Tyler will have his work cut out though if he is to get that one elusive qualifying spot as if the start list is correct he will line up with this year’s Ironman World Championships 4th place finisher, the USA’s Ben Hoffman and 6th place finisher Joe Skipper from the UK. Also in the field is highly regarded US athlete Matt Russell, 17th in Kona this year, and the experienced Rudi Wild who was 2nd in the 2019 Hamburg Ironman.
Tyler showed with his recent win in Cozumel in an Ironman 70.3 race that he has good form but he will be the first to admit that the longer Ironman distance is a very different challenge and it remains to be seen whether he has the level of fitness required to upstage the favorites. It will take a special race from him but if he is there or thereabouts going into the run and has the endurance needed he showed in Cozumel that he can run with the best of them.
Results detailed in a previous posting on this blog.
Five Bermudians headed off to Wilmington earlier this month to comp(L)ete in the 70.3 North Carolina. Steve Smith a veteran to the distance along with 4 sprightly young first timers, Caroline Wright, Mel Sousa, Christine Soutter and Jennie Lightbourne.
Race morning temperature was a cool 51F but the water was very comfortably in the low 70s.
Much to the frustration of our star swimmer Caroline Wright, the first leg was a down stream swim. We were told that the current was so strong in previous years a Dorito bag managed to complete the swim in 45 minutes!
Weather was perfect with a mild breeze on a flat bike course. Steve’s attempt for a PR was hampered by a puncture which lost him some 30 minutes but he was thankfully back on track and racing with the help of some technical support.
The run course was sheltered by woodland and the aid stations were themed and full of lively supporters.
I definitely would recommend this course for first time athletes taking on a 70.3, this year the only obstacle was the distance !! It was especially good for newby swimmers ; you only have to be as fast as a bag of Doritos!
After a two year absence from Xterra Triathlon racing, Bermuda’s Flora Duffy once again dominated the women’s field today to take the 2019 XTerra World Championship title by over 14 minutes from previous two time winner Lesley Paterson of Scotland.
With her win Flora became the first professional triathlete to win five XTerra World Championships, a remarkable feat. Such was her dominance that her winning time placed her 17th overall in 2 hr 49 mins.
Flora got off to a flying start exiting the water in 3rd overall in 21 min 19 secs with Paterson exiting in 24:55, already 3:36 behind Flora.
Flora then posted a 1:38:45 bike to Paterson’s 1:44:17 and exited T2 10 minutes ahead of Paterson.
Flora then extended her lead further with a 47:52 run to Paterson’s 52:42 run. Paterson crossed the line in 3:03:06.
The men’s race was won by good friend and training partner South African Bradley Weiss who like Flora is based part of the year in Stellenbosch where Flora trained with Weiss and husband Dan Hugo. Weiss crossed the line in 2:33:42.
Defending champion Maddie Durkin and 2017 winner Alan Potts took the overall female and male titles today at Clearwater Beach in the 2019 AON Bermuda National Sprint Triathlon Championships today.
Alan was made to work hard for the win by Geoff Smith,Byron Renken and Matt Thompson . Geoff was the early leader out of the 750m choppy swim in 12:51 with Byron and Matt exiting the water in 13 min 34 secs with Alan almost 1 1/2 minutes back in 15 minutes. After a poor transition Alan lost a further 30 secs going into the bike.
Maddie as expected was the early women’s leader out of the swim in 13:40 with last year’s runner up Louise Wells back in 16 mins. Maddie showed just how much she continues to improve with a quick 32:19 bike to further extend her lead over Louise despite Louise posted a strong 33:33 bike leg. Christine Dailey, who led Louise by 1 1/2 minutes after a 14:16 swim was unable to hold off Louise on the bike despite posting a respectable 35:34 bike time.
Geoff used his renowned cycling ability in the blustery conditions to pull away on the 20km bike with a 30 min 33 sec clocking leaving T2 for the 5km run with a lead of over 2 minutes over close friend Matt. Geoff was to be cruelly denied the win as a recurring calf injury saw him having to pull out on the run.
Meanwhile Matt (31:46)opened up a minute lead on Byron (32:39) and a charging Alan (30:40) going into T2 but was unable to hold off Byron and Alan on the run. In the end Alan (19:07) managed to pull away from Byron (19:36) on the run to win in 1 hr 06 mins 09 secs with Byron crossing the line in 1:06:38 for 2nd and Matt, with a 21:06 run 3rd in 1:07:17.
With a lead of over 3 1/2 minutes Maddie was not going to be caught and finished 6th overall in 1:08:07 with a 21:26 run. Louise narrowed the gap with a 20:46 run to finish in 1:11:13 with Christine third in 1:12:51 after a 21:58 run.
There were impressive performances in the 60+ age group with Kent Richardson finishing 7th overall in 1:11:10 and the remarkable 69 year old Charlie Duffy crossing the line in 1:24:23. However in the battle of the spouses Maria Duffy had the edge as the 67 year old Maria finished just 24 seconds ahead of Charlie in 1:24:23 to take 60+ women’s honours. Now we just need Flora to take her 5th XTerrra World Championship title later today ( watch live streaming on Triathlonlive.tv).
The first team over the line was the team of Brian Desmond, Nicholas and Alex Pilgrim in 1:03:06 to win the men’s team division. AON (Eileen Mullowney, Brian Lynch and Edwin Kariuki) were appropriately the company team winners in 1:16:19. Caroline Wright and Jen Lightbourne overcame their recent Ironman 70.3 race fatigue to team up with runner Erica McArthur to take female team honours in 1:13:31. Cora Lee Starzomski, and Toby and Bella Wright were the mixed team winners in 1:06:20.
A group of Bermuda long distance triathletes represented the island last weekend at the Ironman 70.3 North Carolina .
Steve Smith finished 58th in the mens 45-49 age group in 5hrs 20 mins and 39 secs with splits of 27 min 34 secs for the 1.2 mile swim, 2hrs 57 mins 09 secs for the 56 mile bike and 1hr 46 mins and 24 secs for the 13.1 mile run.
Christine Soutter had the best Bermuda finish by age group as she took 40th place in the women’s 40-44 age group with splits of 28:55, 2:48:18 and 2:18:50 for an overall time of 5:46:10.
Caroline Wright and Jennie Lightbourne also finished in the women’s 40-44 age group with Caroline 50th in 5:58:36 with a fast 26:07 swim, a 2:52:05 bike and a 2:31:13 run. Jennie finished 95th in 6:45:12 ( 32:10, 3:09:02 and 2:53:12).
Melanie Sousa was 122nd in the women’s 45-49 age group in 8:39:34 with splits of 43:23, 4:31:52 and 3:07:46