It was mission accomplished for Bahrain Endurance 13 this weekend as Holly Lawrence took a wire-to-wire win at Ironman 70.3 Mont Tremblant, Fredrik Croneborg ran away with the inaugural Challenge Nakhon Nayok title, and Mikel Calahorra qualified for the Ironman 70.3 World Championship. Lawrence continues her winning streak across the half-ironman distance with her title defense in Mont Tremblant. The reigning Ironman 70.3 world champion led out of the water ahead of an Olympian, pedaled away from the field on the hilly bike course, and ran a sub-90 minute half-marathon to retain the crown. It was also a triumphant return to longer races for Croneborg in Thailand. The Swede timed his peak form perfectly to get the job done. He said, “It was a small start field in the race and I tried to make a few scenarios before the race how the race would unfold. Everything started as good as it could be when I was able to follow strong swimmer Mike Phillips. The two of us then biked together and put a good lead into the rest of the field.” It was on the run where Croneborg attacked, separating himself from the field by five minutes by the time he broke the tape. “On the run I felt good most of the way but suffered a bit in the heat towards the end. It was nice that the good feeling in training over the last couple of weeks also showed in the race.” Calahorra placed fourth in his age group at the Ironman 70.3 Coeur d’Alene and crossed the finish line 32nd overall, securing a spot at the Ironman 70.3 World Championship in Chattanooga later this year. While the Spaniard struggled in the rolling start, he found his feet once back on land. “I did a very solid bike, getting back to good power numbers even being conservative that allowed me to get into the run with fresh legs. After the first 8km having some lower back issues, I started getting back to a good pace and catching up people, finishing quite strong and in much better condition than the last races.” Considering he did most of the heavy training in Bahrain in the midst of Ramadan, winning on the eve of Eid al Fitr (the feast day marking the end of Ramadan) is a big accomplishment.
The Bahrain Victorious 13 toughed it out to stay in the money for this weekend’s races in the USA.