It was a double record breaking day as last minute entry Craig Alexander and Julie Dibens win the ninth edition of Ironman Coeur d'Alene with new course records. It was proving day for Alexander, he showed everyone that he's back in form after a virus that forced him out of Ironman Australia and a muscle injury.
It was a chilly start to the day for the 2600+ athletes, the air temp was 49 F while the water temp hard warmed up a bit to 58 F. From there it warmed up to be a nearly perfect day of racing with temps in the low 70's.
Tom Evans was the first pro out of the water in 49:07, about a minute thirty ahead of Alexander. The top 3 men were dueled it out at the start of the bike until Maik Twelsiek took control. 90 miles into the bike, Twelsiek had a 6:47 lead on Alexander and 15:26 on Evans. The no wind conditions helped Twelsiek extend his lead and shattered the bike course by 9 minutes with a time of 4:29:09. Michael Lovato set the bike course record in 2005 with a 4:38:50. Twelsiek exited T2 with a 9:36 lead on Alexander. Little by little Alexander did what he's done before on the run, eat up the gap and come within striking distance of the lead. He passes Twelsiek somewhere between the 15 and 16 mile mark of the run. His pace to catch Twelsiek continued as he extends his gap all the way to the finish line to end the day with a 2:46:54 marathon and a new course record. Twelsiek continued the chase finishing the day in 2nd while Evans rounded out the top 3. This was Alexander's first Ironman win since winning his second Ironman title in Kona back in 2009. He finished in 8:19:48 with splits of: Swim: 50:46, Bike: 4:38:44, Run: 2:46:54.
2011 Ironman Coeur d'Alene Results:
Coeur d'Alene, Idaho
|Pro Men Results||Time||
|Pro Women Results||Time|
|* = New Course Record||* = New Course Record|
One the women's side Dibens was first out of the swim in 52:36, well over 3 minutes ahead of Meredith Kessler who was second. From there Dibens just continued to extend her lead out on the bike course, extending it to about 35 minutes ahead of Caitlin Snow who was in second. Dibens who can bike maybe pushed it a bit too hard today. She took her commanding lead out onto the run course and then experienced was appeared to be nutritional difficulties. She was walking aid stations, trying to fuel back up, in the mean time Snow slowly gained time. After a period of walking and running, Dibens regained her strength and marched on to the finished line, ending the day with 3:27:09 marathon and her first Ironman title in only her second Ironman race. She finished the day 13 minutes ahead of Snow. Even with her difficulties out on the run course, she still had enough to set a new course record, finishing in 9:16:40.
Alexander secures his Ironman race requirement for a chance to race in Kona this year.
With the win Dibens also secures a spot to race in Kona this year.
- 2011 Ironman Ironman Coeur d'Alene Race Coverage and Athlete Tracker [via Ironman.com]
Photo Credit: Ironman.com
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