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Ironman Hawaii 2019 – Analyzing Results

Kona2019LogoCourse Conditions

Last year’s conditions were super-fast – this year’s results indicate that times were slower by maybe two minutes (2018 adjustment 4:18 vs. 2:13 for this year). The bike was about five minutes slower than last year, but a bike adjustment of 6:39 is still one the fastest ever in Kona. (Cameron Wurf is a good example of this difference: Last year he rode a 4:09, this year a 4:14, still the 9th -fastest ever in Kona.) The slightly slower bike was balanced with a run that was about three and a half minutes faster than last year.

We’ve seen Jan Frodeno break the men’s course record from last year: His 7:51:13 was 1:26 faster than last year’s winning time. Anne Haug’s 2:51:07 marathon is the third-fastest ever in Kona, but still 41 seconds slower than Rinny’s 2014 course record.

Kona Qualifying

Kona offers Automatic Qualifier slots for the podium finishers:

  • Women: Anne Haug, Lucy Charles, Sarah Crowley
  • Men: Jan Frodeno, Tim O’Donnell, Sebastian Kienle

These slots still have to be validated with an Ironman finish before August 2020.

Male Race Results

2019 Kona Frodo

Rank Name Nation Swim Bike Run Time Diff to exp. Prize Money
1 Jan Frodeno GER 00:47:31 04:16:02 02:42:43 07:51:13 -05:27 US$ 120,000
2 Timothy O’Donnell USA 00:47:38 04:18:11 02:49:45 07:59:41 -14:44 US$ 60,000
3 Sebastian Kienle GER 00:52:17 04:15:04 02:49:56 08:02:04 02:54 US$ 40,000
4 Ben Hoffman USA 00:51:01 04:24:01 02:43:08 08:02:52 -08:39 US$ 22,500
5 Cameron Wurf AUS 00:52:25 04:14:44 02:55:03 08:06:41 -08:38 US$ 19,000
6 Joe Skipper GBR 00:52:28 04:16:18 02:53:30 08:07:46 -09:42 US$ 16,000
7 Braden Currie NZL 00:47:41 04:30:30 02:46:25 08:08:48 -05:06 US$ 14,000
8 Philipp Koutny SUI 00:52:20 04:15:14 02:57:50 08:10:29 -16:10 US$ 12,500
9 Bart Aernouts BEL 00:57:03 04:19:47 02:51:08 08:12:27 -02:03 US$ 11,000
10 Chris Leiferman USA 00:52:29 04:24:20 02:52:19 08:13:37 -00:16 US$ 10,000
11 Jan van Berkel SUI 00:50:53 04:32:09 02:47:36 08:15:19 -06:30
12 Tim Reed AUS 00:51:02 04:25:53 02:55:51 08:17:37 -05:49
13 Michael Weiss AUT 00:57:05 04:21:37 02:54:34 08:18:02 01:05
14 Andy Potts USA 00:50:57 04:24:16 02:58:58 08:19:30 01:20
15 Daniel Baekkegard DEN 00:47:35 04:37:18 02:49:50 08:19:38 06:40
16 Tim Van Berkel AUS 00:51:44 04:31:01 02:52:37 08:20:16 00:22
17 Matthew Russell USA 00:52:23 04:17:25 03:07:22 08:22:18 -00:06
18 Kristian Hogenhaug DEN 00:52:21 04:15:21 03:10:28 08:23:36 02:28
19 Cyril Viennot FRA 00:52:18 04:29:08 02:57:48 08:23:53 -04:42
20 Nils Frommhold GER 00:50:47 04:24:29 03:05:10 08:24:56 14:56
21 Alistair Brownlee GBR 00:47:33 04:19:58 03:13:00 08:25:03 n/a
22 Lionel Sanders CAN 00:52:22 04:15:22 03:13:42 08:25:54 11:21
23 Marc Duelsen GER 00:52:21 04:28:26 03:01:14 08:26:35 01:20
24 Daniil Sapunov UKR 00:50:55 04:33:57 02:58:07 08:28:22 -10:49
25 Will Clarke GBR 00:52:20 04:30:29 03:01:13 08:29:00 -00:31
26 David Plese SLO 00:52:28 04:31:56 02:59:56 08:30:03 06:57
27 Mario De Elias ARG 00:56:59 04:36:06 02:53:11 08:30:59 -14:28
28 Matt Trautman ZAF 00:52:14 04:25:06 03:11:25 08:33:05 10:43
29 Eneko Llanos ESP 00:51:03 04:40:18 02:56:21 08:33:29 13:12
30 Frank Silvestrin BRA 00:50:55 04:41:52 02:59:04 08:37:06 -05:14
31 Tobias Drachler GER 00:52:08 04:41:40 03:01:59 08:40:44 17:27
32 James Cunnama ZAF 00:52:12 04:27:59 03:16:19 08:41:19 21:42
33 Josh Amberger AUS 00:47:28 04:27:16 03:25:25 08:44:29 19:57
34 Clemente Alonso McKernan ESP 00:51:41 04:43:10 03:03:54 08:45:40 25:32
35 Daniel Fontana ITA 00:51:01 04:41:59 03:13:17 08:51:17 17:40
36 Joe Gambles AUS 00:51:47 04:31:01 03:26:18 08:54:14 34:01
37 Jesper Svensson SWE 00:47:42 04:27:33 03:41:22 09:00:53 44:52
38 Maurice Clavel GER 00:47:40 04:38:33 03:28:39 09:01:05 43:56
39 Mike Phillips NZL 00:50:55 04:33:55 03:36:02 09:05:29 48:14
40 Stefan Schumacher GER 01:04:31 04:30:16 03:26:58 09:08:54 36:13
41 Lukas Kraemer GER 00:57:50 04:48:40 03:54:52 09:47:15 1:18:37
Boris Stein GER 00:54:15 04:13:18 DNF
Patrik Nilsson SWE 00:50:49 04:25:51 DNF
Matt Hanson USA 00:52:23 04:38:34 DNF
Patrick Lange GER 00:47:40 DNF
Andi Boecherer GER 00:50:52 DNF
David McNamee GBR 00:50:59 DNF
TJ Tollakson USA 00:51:44 DNF
Cody Beals CAN 00:52:16 DNF
Franz Loeschke GER 00:52:19 DNF
Andreas Dreitz GER 00:54:26 DNF
Kennett Peterson USA 00:57:07 DNF

Female Race Results

2019 Kona Anne

Rank Name Nation Swim Bike Run Time Diff to exp. Prize Money
1 Anne Haug GER 00:54:09 04:50:17 02:51:07 08:40:10 -14:43 US$ 120,000
2 Lucy Charles-Barclay GBR 00:49:02 04:47:20 03:05:59 08:46:44 -09:21 US$ 60,000
3 Sarah Crowley AUS 00:54:05 04:50:13 02:59:20 08:48:13 -12:51 US$ 40,000
4 Laura Philipp GER 00:59:03 04:45:04 03:02:11 08:51:42 02:22 US$ 22,500
5 Heather Jackson USA 00:59:12 04:46:45 03:04:17 08:54:44 -09:25 US$ 19,000
6 Kaisa Sali FIN 00:59:14 04:53:53 02:57:18 08:55:33 -05:02 US$ 16,000
7 Corinne Abraham GBR 01:02:46 04:51:15 02:59:28 08:58:38 -11:38 US$ 14,000
8 Carrie Lester AUS 00:54:15 04:50:01 03:09:37 08:58:40 -07:23 US$ 12,500
9 Daniela Bleymehl GER 00:59:06 04:45:08 03:19:32 09:08:30 -01:35 US$ 11,000
10 Linsey Corbin USA 00:59:09 05:00:25 03:03:50 09:09:06 -00:45 US$ 10,000
11 Maja Stage Nielsen DEN 00:59:04 05:00:47 03:05:47 09:10:28 -11:02
12 Imogen Simmonds SUI 00:54:10 04:53:25 03:21:00 09:13:20 04:56
13 Daniela Ryf SUI 00:54:20 04:54:19 03:20:36 09:14:26 30:17
14 Sarah Piampiano USA 01:04:36 04:57:04 03:08:54 09:16:29 02:00
15 Gurutze Frades Larralde ESP 01:04:38 05:08:07 02:58:45 09:16:50 -12:11
16 Els Visser NED 01:02:44 04:51:43 03:19:42 09:18:42 -12:49
17 Kristin Liepold GER 01:15:24 05:02:21 03:00:24 09:23:13 -07:01
18 Annah Watkinson ZAF 00:59:14 05:05:19 03:16:09 09:26:03 -02:33
19 Susie Cheetham GBR 00:59:02 05:00:17 03:22:41 09:27:21 16:41
20 Svenja Thoes GER 00:59:07 05:02:16 03:23:49 09:30:50 22:55
21 Mareen Hufe GER 00:59:12 05:03:28 03:22:52 09:30:51 08:17
22 Lesley Smith USA 00:59:03 05:14:16 03:11:40 09:31:40 10:12
23 Nikki Bartlett GBR 00:59:14 04:58:09 03:31:24 09:34:04 06:02
24 Caroline Steffen SUI 00:59:01 05:08:44 03:23:53 09:37:11 22:51
25 Laura Siddall GBR 01:04:34 05:04:43 03:28:20 09:42:52 27:57
26 Kimberley Morrison GBR 00:58:58 04:54:22 03:45:23 09:44:19 22:58
27 Nina Derron SUI 00:59:05 05:11:48 03:30:52 09:46:27 16:16
28 Jeanni Seymour ZAF 00:54:07 05:08:17 03:37:55 09:46:54 38:48
29 Martina Kunz SUI 01:09:17 05:08:43 03:24:20 09:48:17 06:29
30 Bianca Steurer AUT 01:04:32 05:19:49 03:35:43 10:06:31 36:02
31 Lauren Brandon USA 00:49:08 05:11:20 04:10:13 10:16:10 50:28
32 Danielle Mack USA 01:08:16 05:33:15 03:35:16 10:22:35 41:57
33 Meredith Kessler USA 00:54:21 05:28:47 04:57:36 11:27:45 1:05:40
34 Jennifer Spieldenner USA 00:54:00 05:22:41 05:03:36 11:28:22 n/a
35 Sue Huse CAN 01:51:02 05:39:16 04:11:50 11:52:45 1:53:55
Jen Annett CAN 01:02:49 05:12:03 DNF
Camilla Pedersen DEN 00:54:13 05:23:58 DNF
Jocelyn McCauley USA 00:54:02 DNF
Sarah True USA 00:54:03 DNF
Kelsey Withrow USA 00:54:17 DNF
Mirinda Carfrae AUS 00:59:10 DNF
Emma Bilham SUI 01:01:17 DNF

Kona 2019 Kings & Queens: Patrick Lange

Kona Kings & Queens is a collaboration project with sports photographer James Mitchell to highlight some of the Pros racing in Kona. James supplies his awesome pictures (for more check his Instagram account), I add some data and commentary.

JM KoK Patrick Lange



Patrick Lange is the Kona winner of the last two years. He holds both the run course record and the overall course record. So obviously he’s the favorite to win Kona 2019 as well?

As the saying goes, you’re only as good as your last race. Applying this yardstick, others are the Kona frontrunners. Patrick’s season started well with a win against a solid field at 70.3 Vietnam in May, but his performance in Frankfurt was a disappointment. He was riding in a bigger bike group that lost seven minutes in the first 100k to Frodo and Sebi, then suffered a flat that he had to fix in the middle of downtown Frankfurt with thousands of spectators around him. He went on to finish the race in 11th place – after all he needed a full Ironman to validate his Kona slot. Even if he wasn’t in a position to play a big role at 70.3 Worlds, his result was another disappointment: A solid swim was followed by losing a lot of time on the bike, and even a good 1:11 run only resulted in a 23rd place for him. These results certainly put a big question mark on his chances for another Kona title this year.

Then again, this story isn’t really new and pretty much a copy of his last two seasons, both of which ended with Kona wins and new course records. When he raced Ironman Frankfurt in 2017 and 2018 and wasn’t able to seriously contend for the win, finishing 6th and 3rd about ten minutes behind the winner. “The start of the season 2018 didn’t go well, but I was quickly able to identify why I hadn’t been able to win. I learned a lot and was able to make the appropriate changes. It was too bad that I had been written off, but it helped to take a bit of the pressure off for Hawaii”.

Of course the conditions and how the races developed played into his hands, but winning Kona two times in a row takes a lot more than a bit of luck. Patrick has posted the fastest run splits in Kona for the last three years, starting with his run course record of 2:39:45 in 2016. In all likelihood he will also be one of the fastest runners in 2019. In order for him to be able to run himself into another win (or at least a podium), coming off the bike he can only afford to be just a few minutes behind stronger bikers that will be able to run in the 2:45 to 2:50 range. As in the last years, this will put the pressure on him in the swim and especially on the bike, and other athletes will expect him to put in the effort needed to keep the bike leaders in view. For quite some time he has said that “I’m only seen as a runner, but I feel I’m under-rated on the bike. Because I was further behind than expected after the swim last year, I had to take some extra risks at the start of the bike. If I had stuck to my original plan, it would have cost me the title. The decision to take the risk and to go with the stronger bike riders showed to me how much I have improved and that I have been able to absorb the hard session in the mountains. The run might have looked under control from the outside, but I struggled a lot with the heat. To be honest, the first part of the run was tough: My competition started to attack from the first kilometers and I decided to let them go. This was a decisive moment – after 8k I found back into the race and was able to catch up to the others again. From then on, my head was back in the game as well.”

It’s clear that once again he plans to use his heat camp in Texas to get into his best physical shape possible but also the right frame of mind. Last year “in Texas I was able to completely focus on my training for the first time since Kona 2017. I almost didn’t have any contact with the outside world, only my coach, my family and my training partners. That’s what flipped the switch.”

Following his performance in the swim and bike will probably require a bit more digging through the tracker data as the race goes on. If he’s not on point on race day, we might only see him for short glimpses in the live coverage. But if he manages to get things right again, he’ll get a lot of camera time in the second half of the run.

This is an excerpt from my “Kona 2019 Rating Report”. You can download your copy here.


Kona 2019 Kings & Queens: Daniela Ryf

Kona Kings & Queens is a collaboration project with sports photographer James Mitchell to highlight some of the Pros racing in Kona. James supplies his awesome pictures (for more check his Instagram account), I add some data and commentary.

JM QoK Daniela Ryf



When writing about Daniela and her chances in Kona, there are two different approaches you can take: Make it clear how dominant she continues to be – or focus on how she can be beaten and who might be able to do so.

We’ve seen a couple of races this year where a few of the other athletes were not willing to concede the race to her. Most notably, Jocelyn McCauley and Kim Morrison rode with her on the bike leg at Ironman Texas, making this her first long-distance race that she was not leading in T2 and that she didn’t post the fastest bike split. Jocelyn was even leading for a good part of the marathon, before Daniela felt pressured to go harder than she probably was ready for – and probably run harder than her April fitness normally would have allowed. The result in Texas was the same as usual when Dani is on the start line, but it was an indication that one day even Daniela is not going to win an Ironman she races at and that there are athletes thinking about beating her and what it will take to get ready for that.

The other approach – how dominant she is in her racing – is expressed very well in a blog post by her coach Brett Sutton titled “It’s Not Easy Flying Solo“, written after her win at 70.3 Worlds. I’ll just add that the only time she didn’t win an Ironman she finished was her first Kona race in 2014 when it took a course record 2:50 run by Mirinda Carfrae to relegate her to second place. Even jellyfish stings shortly before last year’s start didn’t derail Dani, and as she’s also been able to deal with the immense expectations, it’s extremely likely that she’ll become the first female to win Kona five times in a row.

This is an excerpt from my “Kona 2019 Rating Report”. You can download your copy here.


Kona 2019 Kings & Queens: Lucy Charles-Barclay

Kona Kings & Queens is a collaboration project with sports photographer James Mitchell to highlight some of the Pros racing in Kona. James supplies his awesome pictures (for more check his Instagram account), I add some data and commentary.

JM QoK Lucy Charles



Lucy’s Kona races in the last two years are almost carbon-copies of each other: Win the swim (posting a new swim course record in 2018), then riding at the front of the race for most of the bike leg, being overtaken by Daniela Ryf at about 160k on the bike, then running well and hold on to second place in the marathon. If this year is going to be different, can she improve on second place or will she end up further back in the field?

Her 2019 racing so far has been almost flawless: She won Ironman South Africa even though the swim was shortened, minimizing her swim strength. At Challenge Samorin and Challenge Roth she took the lead in the swim as usual, after which no one in the world-class fields was able to reduce the gap to an extent that her win was in danger. In Roth she posted a new overall PR of 8:31:09 which is also the fastest long-distance time this season, and both her marathons in South African and Roth were under three hours. The only race she wasn’t able to win this year was 70.3 Worlds where she was quickly caught on the bike and then received a drafting penalty when she drifted into another athlete’s draft zone in a slight downhill and didn’t pass her. Even with a 5-minute penalty she still finished in fifth place.

In her last three IM-distance races she has shown that she is no longer “just” a swim specialist. She’s been consistently riding one of the fastest splits and her run has improved as well. As she continues to outswim most of her competition by about six minutes, it will require a very patient “catching up all day long” strategy to beat her. The last two years Daniela Ryf has been able to catch up to her on the bike – maybe this year Lucy will ride even harder to at least make it a race well into the marathon. The rest of the field will have to work harder than in the past to reduce the gap on the bike. It’ll be very interesting to see how the gaps between Lucy and the rest of the field will develop and if anyone other than Daniela will have a chance to overtake her this year.

This is an excerpt from my “Kona 2019 Rating Report”. You can download your copy here.


Kona 2019 Kings & Queens: Bart Aernouts

Kona Kings & Queens is a collaboration project with sports photographer James Mitchell to highlight some of the Pros racing in Kona. James supplies his awesome pictures (for more check his Instagram account), I add some data and commentary.

JM KoK Bart Aernouts



In the last few years, Bart has been racing well in Kona, with a second-place finish last year as his best result. Still, the quiet Belgian probably won’t factor in many race predictions. This is partly because he is losing a fair chunk of time in the swim (around 6 minutes to Jan Frodeno), and while he has improved his bike in recent years, he hasn’t yet become a “bike powerhouse” on the level of Sebastian Kienle or Cam Wurf. His real strength is on the run, especially in the Kona heat. Last year he was able to bridge up to the big bike group that included Patrick Lange and then posted the second-fastest run.

Bart hasn’t had a spectacular 2019 result, but his 6th place at 70.3 Worlds indicates that his Kona form is developing nicely. If he manages a decent swim, he’ll probably have good company in the deep Kona field. A slightly more aggressive bike than in the past could help him start the run in a good position. He’s one of the few athletes with a sub-2:45 run potential in Kona, and that run speed is what he’ll need in order to finish on the Kona podium.

This is an excerpt from my “Kona 2019 Rating Report”. You can download your copy here.


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