Belgian triathlete Marino Vanhoenaker & American pro Meredith Kessler won the first ever official 70.3 race in New Zealand today after the annual Ironman race was postponed one day and shortened due to severe weather on Saturday.
Vanhoenaker won the race from behind with a sizzling 1:12 run to cross the finishline in 4:22.46...just a minute ahead of second place finisher and Australian Triathlete Tim Reed. 10-time Ironman New Zealand champion Cameron Brown crossed the line in 3rd place in 3.56:38.
2012 Ironman New Zealand 70.3
Top Ten Professional Men
1. Marino Vanhoenacker - 3.55:03
2. Timothy Reed - 3.5551
3. Cameron Brown - 3.56:38
4. Romain Guillaume - 3.58:03
5. Aaron Farlow - 3.58:57
6. Marko Albert - 4.00:43
7. Terenzo Bozzone - 4.01:51
8. Guy Crawford - 4.03:29
9. Jamie Whyte - 4.12:05
10. Shanon Stallard - 4.14:46
On the women's side of the race it was American triathlete Meredith Kessler who ruled the race ahead of Australia's Kate Bevilaqua (who managed to hold off Kiwi Joanna Lawn for second).
Kessler was the day's second fastest swimmer, rode away on the bike, and clocked the fastest half marathon to win in 4:22.46.
Top Ten Professional Women
1. Meredith Kessler - 4.22:46 Prp
2. Kate Bevilaqua - 4.30:37 Pro
3. Joanna Lawn - 4.30:40 Pro
4. Jessica Jacobs - 4.31:46 Pro
5. Gina Crawford - 4.32:45 Pro
6. Hilary Wicks - 4.32:51 F35-39
7. Belinda Harper - 4.37:49 Pro
8. Anna Ross - 4.39:47 F30-34
9. Susie Wood - 4.41:33 F35-39
10. Candice Hammond - 4.43:25 Pro