Ruedi Wild bucks an injured foot in the run leg to win the 2017 Century Tuna Ironman 70.3 title (Jamil Buergo)
SUBIC – The third edition of the Century Tuna Ironman 70.3 triathlon crowned new champions as Swiss Ruedi Wild and Radka Kahlefeldt reigned supreme Sunday morning in the scenic Subic Bay.
In one of the ‘wildest’ finish in Ironman 70.3 races done in the Philippines that saw several lead changes particularly in the run leg, Reudi Wild endured running on a sprained ankle and tremendous heat to emerge as the top male pro triathlete besting the past winners of the Century Tuna Ironman 70.3, Craig Alexander and Tim Reed.
The 34-year old former olympian, who was still being attended to by paramedics during the meet the champs press conference, was ecstatic with his victory in his first race in the Philippines. “To finish on top of the podium against a very tough field today means a lot to me” says Wild. He hinted bringing his wife and their expected baby next year as he defends his title. “I hope to be back next time with my baby boy and wife to show them around and I’m sure they would love it here” says Wild.
Ruedi Wild finished the 1.9K swim, 90K bike and 21K run with a time of 03:48:24. Last year’s winner Alexander overtook Tim Reed in the final kilometer of the run to finish second in 03:48:57. 2015 winner settled for third as he crossed the finish line in 03:50:17. Rounding up the top five are Sven Riederer (03:52:04) of Switzerland and Keving Collington (03:52:11) of USA.
In the distaff side, Radka Kahlefeldt finally beat Caroline Steffen in a Sunrise Events Inc. Ironman 70.3 organized race to emerge as the female pro champion of the Century Tuna Ironman 70.3 event. In previous races, Radka would emerge first out of the water ahead of Steffen and sustain her lead after the bike only to falter in the run leg to finish second three times to Steffen. “I’m really excited with my win today. I’ve beat Caroline only once before (in Beijing) but she was sick then so this is something really special for me” says Kahlefeldt.
The 32-year old Czech finished the course in 04:22:13, more than three minutes ahead of multi-titled Ironman 70.3 champion Caroline Steffen. Australian Dimity Lee Duke finished third with 04:41:57 while fellow Aussies Kate Bevilaqua (04:47:29) and Sarah Lester (04:59:19) took fourth and fifth place respectively.
Meanwhile, top local triathletes August Benedicto and Jenny Rose Guerrero won the new Asian Elite division of Ironman 70.3 Philippines with a time of 04:25:42 and 05:14:23 respectively.
The Century Tuna Ironman 70.3 Philippines is produced and organized by Sunrise Events Inc. and is supported by Century Bangus, the Department of Tourism, the Tourism Promotions Board, 2GO Express, SBMA, MNTC, Acea Subic Bay, Gatorade, Saucony, TYR, Alaska, David’s Salon, GU, Intercare, Prudential Guarantee, and Santé Barley along with marketing partners AlcoPlus, Cetaphil, Daylong, Devant, Omega Pain Killer, PLDT Subictel, Regent Foods, Sanicare, Storck and Timex, and official hotels: The Lighthouse Marina, Court Meridian and Subic International Hotel.