Daniela Ryf makes history
Daniela Ryf made history today by winning a fourth world title at the Ironman 70.3 World Championship in South Africa. No triathlete, male or female, has achieved this record.
Daniela, from Solothurn, Switzerland, triumphed over a field of the world's best female athlete. In a winning time of 4:01:12 hours, Daniela was four minutes ahead of second placed Lucy Charles, of the United Kingdom, with bronze going to German athlete, Anne Haug.
"I'm very happy to win in such a strong field. After the swim leg, the zipper on my race suit broke so I was a little less aerodynamic, but I tried not to pay too much attention to that," Daniela said. Daniela passed the lead athlete, Lucy Charles, at the 29 km mark but did not shake her over the 90 km bike course. "The bike course was very, very hard. We were pushing the limits the whole time. The roads were rough and I didn't feel like I was making fast progress,“ Daniela said after the race. The four-time world champion made up some ground with a fast transition onto the half marathon course and four kilometres into the run leg her legs "felt good" and she settled in to a fast pace. In the end, Daniela crossed the finish line with a four minute lead.
"This title is really unique. To win here in South Africa with the great atmosphere and really enthusiastic people is unforgettable".
Ryf flies back to Switzerland on Monday and will spend a week at home before travelling to Hawaii to prepare for the Ironman World Championship.
At the legendary Alpe d'Huez Triathlon only five men were faster than Daniela Ryf.