Wellington is breaking new ground yet again
Norfolk's Chrissie Wellington was a world record breaker again with a dominant Challenge Roth performance over the weekend.
The 34-year-old former Downham Market High School pupil made it a hat-trick of success around the German course, with her new best of eight hours 19 minutes 13 seconds more than 12 minutes faster than her first win in 2009.
She crossed the line fifth overall, and more than half an hour ahead of the second-placed woman, Australia's Rebekah Keat – in front of 180,000 spectators for the Ironman course consisting of a 2.4 mile swim, 112 miles on a bike and a marathon run.
'I'm just so overwhelmed. I really didn't think it was possible to break the record that I set last year,' admitted Wellington. 'To do so and to do it so definitively – I think I have even surprised myself.
'It's a long race and you never know what's going to happen, but I do have a lot of faith in my body and my mind to carry me through. I knew my preparation was good and I did feel strong through the race, but it was only in the last 10km I though the record might be broken – and even then I didn't think it would be by so much.
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'it's a very historic event and there is no other race quite like it. The crowd support is a lot like the Tour de France, there are people five or six rows deep lining the bike course, and again on the run.
'That makes it really extra special, and it's that support which gives us the energy to perform. I'm really proud to break the record once again here.'
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The next challenge for Wellington, who became an MBE thanks to the Queen's birthday honours list earlier this year, are the World Championships held in Kona, Hawaii in October – where the Norfolk star will be aiming to equal Paula Newby-Fraser's record of four consecutive titles.
'My body has pulled up really well – I feel good,' added Wellington. 'I'll focus this week on some light training and recovery, then I'll get back into it and it's all systems go to prepare for the World Championships in Hawaii.
'That is the next Ironman – I will do some shorter races in between – but I am looking forward to going back and defending my crown.'