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American Andy Potts and Australian Melissa Hauschildt, both former world champions at the 70.3 distance, earned the victories at Sunday’s Ironman 70.3 Timberman triathlon in Gilford, N.H.
Potts kicked off his day in a commanding fashion, earning a two-minute gap over New Zealand’s Mark Bowstead, Australia’s Leon Griffin and others.
While Potts held onto his lead early, Germany’s Andreas Dreitz hammered on the hilly bike course behind him and quickly cut into the gap. Dreitz turned in an impressive 2:06:59 bike split to gain a 90-second advantage over Potts and more than four minutes over Griffin, who sat in third.
It didn’t take long for Potts to regain his lead on the run. The former Olympian passed Dreitz on his way to a 1:17:16 half marathon and the 3:53:23 win. Griffin also passed Dreitz to earn third, while Dreitz held off faster runners to claim a podium spot.
Like Potts, American Amanda Stevens rarely misses an opportunity to lead out of the swim, and that’s exactly what she did in Gilford. Her 24:23 swim split for the 1.2 miles gave her a nearly three-minute lead over Mandy McLane (USA), Miranda Tomenson (CAN), Amber Ferreira (USA) and Hauschildt.
Stevens held steady through the first half of the bike, but Hauschildt was working hard behind her. By the time the women reached T2, the Australian had taken the lead and had gained a 45-second gap over Stevens. It was evident one of these two would likely take the win as the third-place athlete at this point, Ferreira, started her run more than seven minutes after Hauschildt.
Hauschildt, a former elite runner, expanded on her lead with every step of the run. Her 1:20:49 run split gave her the 4:12:49 victory and cemented her spot as one of the pre-race favorites heading into next month’s Ironman 70.3 World Championship. Stevens easily held onto second, with Ferreira earning third.
Ironman 70.3 Timberman
Gilford, N.H. – Aug. 18, 2013
1.2-mile swim, 56-mile bike, 13.1-mile run
1. Andy Potts (USA) 3:53:24
2. Leon Griffin (AUS) 3:54:53
3. Andreas Dreitz (GER) 3:56:38
4. Christopher Baird (USA) 3:59:31
5. Mark Bowstead (NZL) 4:02:37
*Kyle Buckingham (RSA) 3:59:09
1. Melissa Hauschildt (AUS) 4:12:49
2. Amanda Stevens (USA) 4:21:45
3. Amber Ferreira (USA) 4:21:45
4. Jessie Donavan (USA) 4:32:33
5. Mandy McLane (USA) 4:37:40
* Amy Farrell (USA) 4:32:37
*Age-group with top-five overall finish time.