Brent McMahon rules Cobra Ironman 70.3

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Sunday, August 3, 2014


CEBU CITY -- When Brent McMahon got a glimpse of the finish line, he knew that it was all in the bag. And the charismatic and animated Canadian was still able to groove to the music—dancing and giving high fives to the crowd—before crossing the finish line as the new men’s pro division champion on Sunday in the Cobra Ironman 70.3 Philippines in Lapu-Lapu City.

“It was great to be back again and be fit. I prepared for this race and came here not just to do it, but to actually win it,” McMahon told reporters yesterday after the grueling 1.9-kilometer swim, 90K bike and 21K run.

McMahon finished the event in 3 hours 59 minutes and five seconds, the only one to finish under four hours.

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The 33-year-old Canadian trailed Sam Betten in the bike and swim segments but took the lead in the 12th kilometer of the 21K run.

“I kept pushing approaching the 20K in the bike, but the Australians were just tough and solid. We were checking each other during the bike route. In the run, I just gained the upper hand and stayed with it,” said McMahon, who posted a time of 23:45 in the run split.


This was the second time for McMahon to hit the streets of Cebu. He finished fifth in 2013.

“When I started triathlon 25 years ago, I was not the best swimmer, nor best runner, nor best cyclist, I just worked hard with my coach and it was just perseverance,” said McMahon.

He has been with his coach for 17 years.

With most of his impressive wins coming this year, McMahon thinks that 2014 is his peak year. He also won the 2014 Ironman 70.3 Boise and 2014 Ironman 70.3 Hawaii.

McMahon will be part of the World Triathlon Championship in Kona, Hawaii in September, and he believes that this will be his chance to take the coveted crown.

“The tough race in the Philippines, with the challenging humid and hot weather, helps me in my preparation. I think I am peaking at the right time for Kona,” said McMahon.

Betten of Australia came second in 4:07:30. He lost his lead in the run segment where he clocked 1:26:03, eight minutes behind the the eventual champion in the running leg.

“It was a great race. The route was very challenging and the weather as well. I had a good race as my first time in the Philippines,” Betten said, who posted 2:14:17 in the bike and 1:17:59 and 23:42 in the swim.

Australian Casey Munro, who finished third was disqualified (DQ) due to non-compliance of the race rules. He had no race bib during the bike and also was caught with illegal drafting.

“Rules are rules, they put that for a reason and I was not able to follow that,” said Munro.

Sunrise Events Inc. (SEI) head Fred Uytengso commended Munro for showing great sportsmanship.

With the decision, veteran triathlete Cameron Brown of New Zealand took the third place in 4:15:44. He completed the swim in 25:47, finished the bike in 2:17:40, and finished it off with a time of 1:28:22 in the run.

Matt Burton got fourth place in 4:22:19, while fellow Australian Justin Granger posted a time of 4:43:40.

In the women’s side, Caroline Steffen of Switzerland was more than familiar of the roads, weather, and the race routes as it was her third time here in Cebu. Steffen dominated the women’s pro category to complete a grand slam win in the Ironman 70.3.

She clocked 4:32:34, good enough to even placed 10th place overall among the men’s division. Steffen excelled in all the three disciplines among the women’s bet, she finished the swim in 25:35, cruised with the men in the bike and completed it in 2:29:10, and cap it off in 1:33:43 in the run.


“Racing in this country will always be special to me,” Steffen said “This year was tough, it was a challenging route.”

Rebecca Hoschke of Australia crossed the finish line second in 4:38:34, while fellow Australian Belinda Granger (4:48:32) and Dimity-Lee Duke (4:49:54) placed third and fourth, and American Katya Mayer (4:54:24) rounded the top five.

The professional triathletes were also grateful with their stay in the Philippines

“It is not about only race day, it is the entire experience on how you get treated here as a visitor. There are no other races in the world that have this kind of treatment in the world,” said Granger.

“Also one of the reasons why I came back here aside from triathlon are the people. They are just genuine and everybody is very accommodating.” (Sun.Star Cebu)

Published in the Sun.Star Cebu newspaper on August 04, 2014.

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