Ben Hoffman is out of this year’s Ironman World Championship due to a sacral stress fracture.

Ironman champ Ben Hoffman will not be racing, he announced yesterday.

Ben Hoffman is out of this year’s Ironman World Championship due to a sacral stress fracture. The Coloradan has been a podium contender for the better part of a decade, most notably placing second in 2014, fourth in 2016, and ninth last year. He is a six-time Ironman champion, most recently going sub-8 hours to win the Ironman African Championship in 2017. (His time: 7:58:39.)

“Unfortunately, I’m here with some bad news today,” Hoffman started his Instagram announcement. “I’m announcing that I will not be comping in Kona 2018. We always push ourselves to the limit to be as ready as possible for the big race, and unfortunately this time I pushed a little too far. I suffered a grade four sacral stress fracture in my right side. In the interest of my long-term health, I’ve decided to pull the plug on the race this year. I will still be on the island to support my sponsors and teammates that are racing. Right now it’s just about resting and recuperating so I can get back to 100% as soon as possible. I fully believe that I will put this behind me and return to a high level of racing. I’m already looking forward to 2019. Thank you everyone who has supported me in this journey so far. It means everything to have your belief and support.”

The news comes less than a month after two-time Kona champ Jan Frodeno announced he would not be racing on the Big Island because of a stress fracture in his sacroiliac joint.

The sacrum is the triangular bone at the base of the spine that connects to the pelvis via sacroiliac joints. Stress fractures in the sacrum and SI joints can cause pain in the lower back, groin, butt, or hip and are associated with repetitive load-bearing activities like distance running.

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Wish I was posting today with better news. I pushed my limits in training in pursuit of a top finish in Kona, and unfortunately this time I crossed over the limit. I have to announce that I will not be racing this year’s edition of the Ironman World Championship due to a grade 4 sacral stress fracture. I’m beyond disappointed, but we are regrouping and doing what we can to move forward and return to the top level. Thank you to everyone who supports this effort. I’ll still be on the island to support my teammates and sponsors, and I want to wish everyone racing the best of luck.

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