Kelly Williamson Looks To Defend At San Juan 70.3

The Panama 70.3 runner-up will face a tough field at this weekend's Ironman 70.3 San Juan triathlon.

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Defending champ Kelly Williamson will face a tough field at this weekend’s Ironman 70.3 San Juan triathlon.

She’s headed to Puerto Rico this weekend for the Ironman 70.3 San Juan, the same race she won last year.

“I’m just going to go do my thing,” says Williamson, 34. She’s expecting a smooth swim, a flat but windy bike ride and a hot and hilly run, conditions in which she should excel.

A former collegiate swimmer from Indiana, Williamson seems to be on a roll. She’s been focusing on her bike training, historically her weakest link.

Last month she logged a second place finish at Ironman 70.3 Panama, where she clocked the fastest run on the course for a female — 1 hour, 16 minutes and 18 seconds. She credits that speedy run to knowing she had 12 minutes to make up on the leaders, and the fact that the course was marked in 3-kilometer increments instead of miles.

“If I’d seen my mile pace, I’d have slowed down. Instead I had to go by feel, and I picked it up the final couple of miles,” she says. “You’ve got to go for it or not be on the podium.”

Williamson also won the 3M Half Marathon here in Austin in January.

Besides winning in San Juan last year, she also placed first at the Buffalo Springs Lake 70.3 Triathlon and finished 13th at the Ironman World Championships in Kona.

This year’s race calendar includes Ironman 70.3 Texas on April 1, Ironman Coeur d’Alene on June 24, the Hy Vee 5150 Championships in August, the 70.3 World Championships in September, and the Ironman World Championships in Kona in October (those last three pending qualification.)

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