Currie places eighth in strong field in South Africa

Braden Currie
Braden Currie
Wanaka athlete Braden Currie has finished eighth at the Ironman 70.3 world championships in South Africa.

Currie was up against some extremely talented athletes at the race at Port Elizabeth, and is intending to use the experience of the race for the full Ironman championships in Kona, Hawaii, in six weeks.

German Jan Frodeno, who won the race, has won a world ironman championship and also Olympic triathlon gold, while two-time Olympic triathlon champion Alistair Brownlee was also

part of the field.

The championships, which is over half the distance of a normal ironman event, was close throughout. To be in the placings, competitors had to be on form right throughout the race.

Currie started well in the swim, recording a personal best with 21min 57sec for the 1.9km, exiting the water only 4sec behind the leaders.

Currie did not have a great transition to the bike though, and found himself at the rear of the front bunch.

``By that time you are dealing with the bungee effect. When someone like Jan is putting out so much power up the road, you have to absorb it after its been stretched through about seven or eight people. It just became way too much,'' Currie said.

He eventually slipped back and found the going tough on the wet roads.

Currie was off the bike in 2hr 9min 15sec for 90km, just under 5min behind the leaders.

``I did what I could early on in the run and I felt really good. I wasn't running as fast as I hoped but I had really good endurance, so that's positive for Kona.''

The running leg is 21.1km.

Frodeno took the win in a phenomenal time of 3hr 36min 30sec.

Currie crossed the line in 3hr 49min 16sec.

``This is my first world 70.3 champs experience and I believe you live and you learn. I know if I want to be at the front of that race I need to work on my top-end power and not worry so much about my endurance. That way I can get to the front on the bike and be among those bursts, rather than dealing with them on seventh wheel.''

Currie will return to his Noosa training base, and is looking forward to getting a few solid weeks of training in before his second tilt at the Kona event on October 14.


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