Lance Wins Second Consecutive Half-Ironman
Lance Armstrong got one step closer to achieving his stated goal of qualifying for the Kona Ironman World Championships with a convincing win at last weekend's Hawaii Ironman 70.3.
This latest win was Armstrong's second Ironman 70.3 victory in a row, which he clinched with an exceptionally strong performance on the bike and a solid all-around race. After coming out of the swim just a few seconds behind second-place Timothy Marr, Armstrong made a quick transition and started spinning the cranks of his Trek Speed Concept at his trademark high cadence clip, racking up nearly seven minutes on key rival Greg Bennett. During the half-marathon run portion of the race—where Armstrong has struggled this year—Bennett logged the fastest time (1:18:21) but it wasn’t enough to overcome Lance’s considerable lead, and Bennett came in 2:46 behind the seven-time Tour de France champion, whose 3:50:58 finishing time (which included a scorching 2:01:46 bike split) was good enough for a new course record.
Honu marks Armstrong’s fifth Ironman 70.3 finish of the season, and only the sixth triathlon the 40-year-old Armstrong has entered since he was a teenager.
His previous race at Ironman 70.3 Florida was his only other victory so far, but his trajectory this season is lining up well for a shot at Kona. He is scheduled to race his first full 140.6-mile Ironman on June 24 in Nice, France—all part of his bid to earn enough points to qualify for the world championship Oct. 13, in Kailua-Kona, Hawaii.
For a blow-by-blow of the action in Hawaii, check out Slowtwitch.com’s full race coverage.