CEBU—They swam, they biked, they conquered.
Tim Reed and Caroline Steffen, picked by all the experts to rule this race, lived up to their top billing by handily winning the 2016 Cobra Energy Drink Ironman 70.3 Asia-Pacific Championship Presented by Ford held here Sunday, August 7.
Both Reed and Steffen trailed after the swim part of the race. Both grabbed the pole position during the bike part of the race.
“I always thought of Crowie (Craig Alexander) as the better runner, so that’s why I put some pressure on him in the bike part of the race. Then I got into the run. As soon as I heard the crowd, I couldn’t help myself and just ran faster because of the cheers of the fans. But it was brutal out there. With five miles to go I almost stopped. I just stayed the course,” said Reed seconds after crossing the finish line.
August Benedicto and Monica Torres also repeated as champions in the Filipino and Filipina Elite categories, respectively. Cebu native Paul Jumamil followed Benedicto while Rambo Chicano took third place. Maria Hodges and Ani Brown placed second and third in the Filipina Elite.
Reed’s game plan worked to perfection. He grabbed the lead in the bike part of the race then hung on to win.
Second place went to Alexander. Sam Betten, who was first out of the water, finished third to complete an Aussie sweep.
Immediately after crossing the finish line, a completely exhausted Betten sat down underneath the arch at the finish and had to be assisted to get medical attention at the sidelines.
Steffen appeared shaky late in the race. In the run, she stopped to rest in front of a hydration table, tried to resume running and vomited. But she recovered quite well to rule the race. She jumped as she crossed the finish with arms raised and smiling broadly.
“I’m amazed to win it for the fifth time. I’m especially happy to win this year especially here in the Philippines one of my favorite places in the world. I’m happy to walk away with another first-place finish,” said Steffen.
Third place went to Sarah Crowley, who timed the fastest run.
Steffen and Radka Vodickova, who was first out of the water, were neck-and-neck in the bike part of the race but Steffen broke away early in the run part of the race. Vodickova finished second.
“I’m so happy with my (bike) ride. Caroline is such an athlete and I’m just so happy to finish second. Four years ago, I ran at the London Olympics and I thought it felt like festive disco. But here I am in the Philippines four years later and it’s just as festive if not more. I’m happy to place well here,” said Vodickova.
The Ironman 70.3 Asia Pacific was viewed live via streaming on go.globe.com.ph and www.ironman.com through Globe Telecom’s new original productions arm, Globe Studio which handled the live broadcast of the event. This gave triathlon fans and enthusiasts outside of Cebu the rare chance to experience the action live.
Other backers of the event are Alaska, Philippine Airlines, Summit Water, Department of Tourism, Tourism Promotions Board, 2Go Express, Asics, Gatorade, Prudential Guarantee, Oakley, Timex, David’s Salon, Intercare, Gu gel, Kenneth Cobonpue, Megaworld Mactan Newtown, Sun Life Financial, TYR, Technology partner was Xurpas, official hotels Shangri-La Mactan Resort & Spa, Be Resorts Mactan, Crimson Resort and Spa Mactan, Waterfront Hotel and Casino Mactan, Movenpick Hotel Mactan Island Cebu and official registration partner Active Network.