A picture perfect race day at the St. Croix 70.3 was not to be had. The “Beast” ending up being the rain more than the hills, resulting in many crashes and flat tires. Andy Potts came away with the win which was no surprise because, aside from not being able to unlock the Kona key, when Andy shows up he wins. His first out of the water swim, solid biking (less than 4 minutes slower than Lance) and run course record split (1:12:50 ) had him passing Armstrong at mile 8 on the run. Stephane Poulat put on a solid show to take 2nd from Armstrong and beat him by less than 2 minutes.
Lance Armstrong will win a 70.3 one day, but not until he figures out how to work the balance of a commanding bike lead and than backing it up with a run to match some of the speed of the worlds’ best. Chris Lieto has had similar issues in Kona with leading of the bike and not being able to back it up with the run. We will probably see Lieto and Armstong working together ahead of the pack come October on the Big Island. But the guys are already on to them. Could it be that Norman Stadler’s big championship wins on the bike ruined this strategy for both Lieto and Armstrong? How much cushion of the bike will be necessary for Armstrong to win Kona and more importantly, will the field let him get away with it?