Big Ironman Weekend

Starting with today’s Honu 70.3 race on Kona, the fun continues with Ironman and 70.3 Cairnes, Switzerland 70.3 and then back to North America with the Mooseman 70.3 in New Hampshire. Lance Armstrong will be battling with the likes of Chris Lieto, Maik Twelsiek and Greg Bennett and will be an unlikely victor today in Kona.  We’ll see if hometown favorite Bree Wee has gotten her mojo back and can get atop the podium with Linsey Corbin and Melanie McQuaid powering down on that bike course, one of the hardest strips of the Ironman World Championship course.

In New Hampshire, will Lesley Patterson be able to defend her title again Mary Beth Ellis, fresh of her course record win at Memorial Hermann Ironman Texas?  Maxim Kriat may have some challengers to the defense of his title with Aussie Clayton Fettell or American James Duff.

Watch for hometown heros Ronnie Schildknecht (3x winner here), Mathias Hecht and Caroline Steffen to fight for the top spots in Switzerland tomorrow.

The first big news in Cairns is that Ironman World Championship 70.3 champion Melissa Hauschildt (formerly Rollison) will be making her Ironman debut to stamp her ticket to Kona. We won’t be able to check our her Ironman form though, as she’ll be walking as to not aggravate a stress fracture injury. But the race to watch in Cairns is Chris McCormack to see if that ITU form will translate to Ironman. Typical McCormack banter has him saying he feels “under-prepared” for this race. But the truth is, Chris McCormack races to win.  Don’t bet on him sitting back merely to stamp his Kona passport–watch for him to utilize that ITU speed along with his muscle memory to pound out a beauty of a race.

Macca says, “I know the guys will be arriving in Cairns prepared and ready to race. I will play for as long as I can that is for sure. Maybe things might fall my way and I can sneak a nice win. That would be beautiful.”  And this would be especially beautiful since he has disclosed that he did not make the Olympic team for Australia.  Expect him to use that disappointment to his strategic advantage on the course.

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