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Popular 2014 Posts

Here’s a quick look at the traffic in 2014 (based on my Google Analytics data):


Similar to the last years, I was able to increase my traffic significantly, with typical spike in October for Kona. Here are the most popular TriRating posts from 2014:

  1. Kona Live Predictions
    „Live Predictions“ is a fun project I repeated for Kona 2014: Updating my predictions as the race unfolds by using athlete’s projected capabilities in conjunction with their current splits. Again, I received ongoing technical support from Russell Cox, and some welcome financial support by VeloDynamics.
  2. Course Ratings
    This ongoing page shows how courses compare to each other – which are fast and slow, and how to convert times from one course to another.
  3. Kona Odds
    Based on athlete’s prior results, I calculate statistical odds for Kona. I let this slide for a bit in 2014, but the interest shows that I should be more diligent in 2015.
  4. Top 10 Ratings
    My top ranked Ironman-distance athletes, based on the statistical analysis of their race results. Again, another page I should probably update more frequently than I did in 2014.
  5. Changing the gap between the Pro Women and Age Group Men in Kona
    This post created my biggest traffic-spike outside of Kona. I analyzed the impact of different gaps in the Kona start times and produced a lot of chatter on Twitter.
  6. 2013 Money List
    A look at the money earnings of even the top athletes is always sobering and leads to a discussion of the state of Pro racing. A 2014 version is already in the works for my upcoming 2014 Rating Report.
  7. „Always Up-to-date“ Kona Startlist
    Most Kona start lists are just a one-time post. My version is updated as athletes accept/decline their spots and when athletes announce that they won’t be able to start.
  8. August Qualifier
    There was a lot of movement in the men’s August slots that I covered in this post.
  9. Silent Updates to the 2015 KPR
    There was a large number of posts as WTC announced changes in the KPR – I uncovered a few more changes that were not announced in a press release.
  10. Women’s Field as Deep as Men’s?
    Another post focused on „women’s issues“ that generated a lot of interest on Twitter. This time I looked for data supporting the claim that the women’s field is less deep than the men’s – but couldn’t find it.
Looking at the number, I was able to relive some of my favorite memories of the 2014 Ironman season, maybe you’d like to re-discover them with these posts as well?

My „bread-and-butter posts“ of race predictions and results analysis get quite some traffic as well, but they have a shorter „life span“ and therefore don’t get as many views as the standard pages or analysis posts in the Top 10 list above. (Not surprisingly, the most popular race post was on Kona, followed by predictions for Roth, Los Cabos and Florida.)

KPR 2015 – Overview of Changes

In October, WTC announced the rules for Pros that want to qualify for Kona 2015 – the system known as „Kona Pro Ranking” or KPR for short. The official rules can be found on the Ironman website. Compared to 2014, there have been a few changes:

  1. There will be automatic qualifiers for the winners of the five Regional Championships.
    The Asia-Pacific (Melbourne in March) and the European (Frankfurt in July) championships are unchanged. The North American Championship has moved from Mt. Tremblant in August to Texas in May. There will be two additional Regional Championships, one for for Africa (Nelson Mandela Bay/South Africa in March) and another one for Latin America (Florianopolis/Brasil in May).
  2. There won’t be automatic qualifiers for the 70.3 champions (Daniela Ryf and Javier Gomez for 2014) or the HyVee champions (Hunter Kemper and Helle Frederiksen)
  3. The automatic slot for Kona champions are still in the rules, but validation now requires a „competitive finish as determined by Ironman“.
  4. There will still be five results that count for the total score, but now only up to three IMs count.

Changes to the race calendar (fewer races in North America with Pro divisions and KPR points) have been announced, but the changes for 2015 Kona qualifying are pretty small. (For example, the number of full distance IMs is basically unchanged from 2014 to 2015.)

A lot of details are unchanged from 2014, most notably:

  1. The points schemes per race are unchanged (P-8000 for Kona, P-4000 for Regional Championships, P-2000 for other IMs).
  2. The number of points slots are unchanged (50 slots for men and 35 for women).
  3. The dates for assigning slots are unchanged (end of July for the majority of slots, and end of August for the final slots).

2015Title Thumb

Over the next days, I will have a closer look at the impact of the changes. If you’re interested in the KPR, please consider purchasing the 2015 KPR Observer: For 29$ you will receive an „Initial Information Package“ (describing the KPR in detail and my 2015 cutoff estimates) and at least six updates as the season progresses (some more info on the Graph View and Table View can be found here). (If you act soon and purchase before the Observer’s release around mid-November, you can get it for it’s pre-release price of 24$.)

KPR Observer – Preview

The last few days I’ve been busy setting up the 2015 KPR Observer. I still have a few more todos on my list, in the meantime you can still benefit from the reduced pre-order price of 24$!

In order to give you a better idea of the value that I’ll provide with the KPR Observer updates during the season, here’s a look at two documents with different views on the KPR Rankings: the Graphical View for an overview, and the KPR Table for all the details. Together with my commentary on recent developments and a look at the upcoming races, they make following the KPR very easy and will safe you a ton of time!

Graphical View

The graphical view shows a lot of information on a single page. Here is an example of the Men’s Standing in early July (of course, there is a similar page for women’s qualifying):

KPR Men 20140707

Here’s what you can see on this page:

  • Automatic Qualifiers (blue)
    All the „potential“ Automatic Qualifiers are listed, with my assessment of whether they’ll validate and take their slot.
  • Projected Cutoff
    Based on my projections, I give a projection for the July cutoff (and later for the August cutoff as well).
  • Safe (green)
    Based on the cutoff, the athletes that have a safe Kona slot are listed. Some names are in UPPERCASE, these are new in the category. (For example, Jan Frodeno had just finished third in Frankfurt, thereby fulfilling the requirement of racing at least one IM and also scoring enough points.)
  • Bubble (yellow)
    Athletes that are within a few hundred points of the projected cutoff. If they score a couple hundred more points, they should be able to move into safe territory, but without any points might  come up just short. (In fact, all athletes on the bubble made it to Kona after scoring some more points.)
  • Close (orange)
    These athletes are within a thousand points of the cutoff, but do not have enough points for a slot at this point.
  • Potential (brown)
    These athletes are even further back, but are on the start list for one of the remaining IMs, and could secure a slot with a good performance. (For example, Kyle Buckingham got a slot by winning IM Lake Placid.)
  • Not interested (red)
    These athletes may be placed well in the rankings, but have said that they are not interested in a Kona slot. Therefore, they probably won’t validate their slot or further improve their score.

On the bottom there is some background information how far the season has progressed (date, last race, number of completed IMs etc.).

KPR Table

The KPR Table shows similar information, but goes into much more details. Again, here is a look at the men’s standings in early July:


The Table is delivered as Excel spreadsheets (one for the men and one for the women, plus another sheet showing the Points schemes). Some details on the columns in this sheet:

  • Rank
    For the ranking, I am not counting Automatic Qualifiers (marked “AQ”) and those not interested in a slot (denoted by a “-“), so #40 (for the men) will actually be the last one in a position to receive a July slot.
  • Validated
    This column indicates whether an athlete has already fulfilled the minimum requirement of finishing at least on IM outside of Kona to be eligible for a Kona slot.
  • Races
    In this column I show how many races an athlete already has on his scorecard and which score would drop off the scorecard once another good result is added.
  • Kona
    This is my assessment of the athlete’s chances to get a Kona slot, going from a green up arrow showing a safe slot down to a red down arrow meaning that a Kona slot is very unlikely.
  • Comments
    Some more information about the athlete, e.g. known race plans.
  • Races1-5, Points1-5
    Shows where the athlete scored how many points (only those races that are part of the athlete’s total).

If you purchase the KPR Observer, you’ll receive this information at least six times (and more likely, ten times) as the season progresses, therefore aways staying up to date on recent developments. You still have a few day left to benefit from it’s reduced pre-release price of 24$ at

Kona 2014 Resources

Thanks to the support of VeloDynamics, I will again be able to offer my “Live Predictions” during the race at – combining the actual splits as the race progresses with my predictions to give you much better insight into how the race will likely turn out. All of this on one easy to use page with all the useful information. Please check it out!

Here is a list of my resources for Kona 2014:

Here are some more articles and interviews that I found interesting:

  • Interview by Tawnee Prazak on EndurancePlanet with Craig Alexander, Terenzo Bozzone and Pro race previews with Hillary Biscay and Chris McCormack
  • Interview on IMTalk with Andy Starykowicz, they also have “Kona Super Specials” with loads of interviews
  • John Levison on about “Pro Men: How to win Kona” and a similar post for the women)
  • The guys on have a number of articles focused on the Kona field (e.g. The Kona Book, or the Women Contenders)
  • Timothy Carlson has posted detailed looks at the Kona fields for years on slowtwitch, check out his Men’s Preview and Women’s Preview
  • Bob Babbit has a lot of recent interviews with Kona contenders at Babbitville (plus he will be doing his “Breakfast with Bob” interviews in the week before Kona)
  • Cupacakes with Cal is a series of interviews with the big names in Triathlon by Pro triathlete Callum Millward – a mixture of good fun and great content
  • For the German language speakers: has a lot of interviews (e.g. Jan Frodeno, Julia Gajer) on their YouTube channel and tri-mag some more with Sebi Kienle, Andi Raelert, Caroline Steffen and other close to the race

I’ll update this list as soon as my friends and I release more information over the next days!

Kona 2014 Rating Report

Title Kona 2014 Rating Report Thumb

I have released my Kona 2014 Rating Report focused on the upcoming “big dance” on Hawaii.

The report is 90 pages with tons of information:

  • Ironman Hawaii results, the course and course records
  • Detailed analysis from last year’s race
  • The Kona 2014 start list and my predicted finishing times for the pro athletes
  • Based on the predicted times for each of the legs, I have a look how the race may unfold
  • Odds for the winners and Top 3
  • My views on the contenders and interviews with a lot of Pro starters
  • Previous results of all Kona Pros

A lot of people have asked how they can pay me back in some way for the information I’ve been putting out. In order to enable that, I’m releasing this report through Gumroad. The report is still free (you can just enter “0” as the amount), but if you want to help with my hosting costs and enable me to provide a better race coverage, you can donate an amount of your choice. Regardless of whether you donate or not, feel free to share with others and enjoy!

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