The 2022 U.S. racing season officially is officially on, starting with Clash Miami (formerly Challenge Miami) at Homestead-Miami Speedway this weekend. The full weekend of multisport launched on Friday with back-to-back pro races for the women’s and men’s field, followed by a day of age-group racing at the middle and sprint distances for triathlon and duathlon.
Ashleigh Gentle of Australia won the pro women’s event, clocking a 2:59:41 despite record-high temperatures and howling winds that caused more than 40% of the women’s field to drop (including a dramatic collapse by Emma Pallant-Browne, who suffered from dehydration). In the men’s race, American Sam Long gradually made his way through the field to take the lead partway through the bike and follow it with a dominating run for a 2:39:55 win. Read our pro race recap from the wild day in Miami, and re-live the weekend with these Clash Miami photos from Eric Wynn and shots of the age-group racing from FinisherPix.
The pro women prepare for the start of the race.
Brazil’s Pamella Olivera exits the swim, which took place in a spring-fed lake inside the speedway,
American Lara Gruden rounds a corner of the Homestead-Miami Speedway racetrack.
Two-time Australian Olympian Ashleigh Gentle was laser-focused all day, working her way to the front of the women’s race in the bike and opening up a gap of almost two minutes in T2.
American pro Laura Matthews enters T2. In addition to the $50,000 total prize purse, the race offered bonus money for in-race primes, such as fastest T1 and T2 time.
American pro Brittany Higgins begins her run at Challenge Miami. Higgins would later drop from the race, succumbing to what she called “brutally hot conditions.” More than 40& of the women’s field recorded a DNF, many due to the heat and humidity.
Denmark’s Maja Stage-Nielsen stormed her way to a 3:08:08 third-place finish.
Gentle continued to build on her lead during the 10.5-mile run leg, averaging 5:55 per mile to pull away from the rest of the field by more than seven minutes.
Britian’s Emma Pallant-Browne collapsed from heat and dehydration midway through the run course. After receiving medical assistance, Pallant-Browne said the experience was “one of the scariest moments” and “a big warning sign.”
Gentle’s 2:59:41 win bested the previous course record in Miami.
After the conclusion of the pro women’s race, the pro men kicked off their event. The 1 p.m. start, coupled with witnessing the effects of the heat on the women’s race, meant the pro men adjusted their racing strategy. Commentators noted many of the men, after watching the women, realized they needed to pace the bike, stay hydrated, and race within themselves. “We were just blown away,” said pro Jason West, of the men all watching the women’s race beforehand.
Germany’s Jonas Schomburg and Australia’s Aaron Royle led the men out of the swim, clocking 20:08 and 20:12 splits, respectively, for the 1700-meter, two-lap swim.
Tyler Butterfield of Bermuda pushed the pace on the bike, making his way from 22nd out of the swim to 5th at the finish line.
The bike course covered 17 laps (and many turns) over 40 miles on the flat and fast Homestead-Miami Speedway racetrack.
Third-place finisher Ben Kanute (USA) also won the bonus for fastest T2 split of the day, going from bike to run in just 18 seconds.
Sam Long set the tone for the run early, powering out of T2 with a 20-second lead that grew to almost two minutes.
With Long leading the way, the men’s field saw a rotating cast of characters for the podium; Magnus Ditlev, who held the second-place position early in the run, fell off the pace in the heat during the final miles, eventually recording a DNF. Meanwhile American Jason West clocked the fastest run split of the day, averaging 5:15 per mile to make his way from tenth place off the bike to second overall.
The Challenge Miami pro women’s podium (L-R): Sonja Catano, Maja Stage Nielsen, Ashleigh Gentle, Pamella Olivera, Samantha Kingsford.
The Challenge Miami pro men’s podium (L-R): Tyler Butterfield, Ben Kanute, Sam Long, Jason West, Youri Keulen.
An age-group athlete awaits the start of the sprint- and middle-distance races at Clash Miami.
Athletes line up for the swim start of the age-group competition at Clash Miami.
An athlete smiles as she makes her way on an out-and-back portion of the bike course that briefly leaves the speedway for a jaunt through the mangroves leading toward the Florida Keys.
An age-group athlete loops around the Homestead-Miami Speedway during the bike portion of the middle-distance race.
An age-group athlete feels strong while making her way through the run course at Clash Miami.
Age-group athletes take on the two-loop run course of the Clash Miami middle distance race.
Athletes celebrate after finishing Clash Miami.
For full results and race coverage, visit Clash Endurance.