With opportunities to qualify for Kona in 2017 fast diminishing, Ironman UK provides the opportunity for athletes to rack up some vital points this weekend. Half-distance racing in Racine will see the reigning World Champion looking to extend her amazing form over the distance.
Text By Laura Siddall | Images By Getty Images, Talbot Cox, Darren Wheeler and Rob Sheeley
Gossage Targets A Fourth Ironman UK Title
We are now in the back end of the season, if we go by the cut off for points and qualification for the Ironman World Championships in October. Ironman UK is one of the races where the women can look to add and gain points to help their ranking.
Lucy Gossage is already qualified for the World Champs, but has confirmed that she won’t be racing in Kona this year. However she continues her tour of Great Britain by lining up to defend her title in Bolton. This race means a lot to Gossage and she’s going to be hard to beat on this course. There’s a good chance we will see her ‘doing a Lucy’ down the finish chute to cross the line!
Gossage has won this race for the past two years, so it would be a fantastic three-peat performance if she wins this weekend. Victory would also take her total number of wins at Ironman UK to four, as she won in 2013 as well.
Nikki Bartlett, is one of the professionals chasing points in her goal to qualify for Kona this year. She’s had a great season, regularly on the podium and seems to be stringing some consistent and injury free training together over the past few weeks, putting her in a great place leading into Bolton.
Katia Konschak and Diana Riesler both lined up at Ironman Frankfurt last weekend, but as they both didn’t finish the race there, we can possibly expect them to be on the start line for Bolton.
Rielser is the three-time winner of Ironman Malaysia, and whilst Bolton may not be quite as tropical as Langkawi, Rielser has a very strong bike/ run combo that could challenge Gossage for the win.
Konshcak, unfortunately pulled out of Frankfurt last weekend part way through, and has commented that whilst the body wasn’t there. She’s also mentioned that she was suffering with a cough, and so may not be recovered to start in Bolton.
Whilst Lucy Charles is on the start list, it is highly doubtful that she will line up having come second at Ironman Frankfurt, securing her slot for Kona.
Ironman UK 2017 Start List
|20||Gossage||Lucy||GBR (UNITED KINGDOM)|
|21||Bartlett||Nikki||GBR (UNITED KINGDOM)|
|25||Drewett||Hannah||GBR (UNITED KINGDOM)|
|26||Comber||Kate||GBR (UNITED KINGDOM)|
|27||Charles||Lucy||GBR (UNITED KINGDOM)|
Can Anyone Topple The World Champ?
Sarah Piampiano starts as the top seed at Ironman 70.3 Racine having won the event in 2016. Last year the race experienced horrendous weather with a delayed start, cancelled swim and short bike due to storms. This year we hope the race fairs better.
It’s hard to go past Holly Lawrence for the win when she’s on any start list at the moment. Unless anything unforeseen happens, Lawrence is favourite to win.
Jodie Robertson had a fantastic race at Ironman Texas to take the North American Championships title, and will be looking to convert that performance to another win over the half distance.
Ironman 70.3 Racine 2017 Start List
|35||Piampiano||Sarah||USA (United States of America)|
|36||Lawrence||Holly||GBR (United Kingdom)|
|39||Hering||Jackie||USA (United States of America)|
|41||Robertson||Jodie||USA (United States of America)|
|45||Benner||Holly||USA (United States of America)|
|46||Berry||Desiree||USA (United States of America)|
|48||Casey||Terry||USA (United States of America)|
|49||Doehla||Alissa||USA (United States of America)|
|50||Lendway||Heather||USA (United States of America)|
|51||Smith||Sierra||USA (United States of America)|