Daniela Ryf reclaimed her title at Ironman Switzerland, obliterating the course record and validating her start at the Ironman World Championship. Coming off her win at Challenge Roth last weekend, this back-to-back win over the full distance extends her winning streak across the races she has completed and sets her up for another thrilling Kona campaign.
The race began in much the same fashion as her 2014 win here: fellow Swiss Celine Scharer led out of the water in 53 minutes. This time though, Ryf was right on her heels, then proceeded to put distance between herself and the rest of the field with a scorching bike split of 4:46. The lead of 21 minutes off the bike ballooned to 30 minutes by the end of a 3:07 marathon as Ryf stopped the clock in 8:51:50. This time beat the previous course record by eight minutes and put her in 10th overall.
“My strategy was to go easy but Celine was going so good in the swim, I just had to follow,” said Ryf. “On the bike, I decided to go hard then, and on the run you can’t go easy when there are so many people.”
Meanwhile, David Plese ran himself into 5th place. After exiting the swim six minutes down in 15th, he got into the mix on the bike course and moved into as high as 8th place midway through. The Slovenian let his run legs do the talking as he moved from 7th to 5th before running out of real estate.
With the men’s and women’s champions already locked in for a title defense, the next few weeks will determine the other Bahrain Endurance team members who will join them on the starting line in Hawaii.