McMahon Cobra Ironman champ; Steffen wins again August 04,2014 - 03:47 PM

Brent Mcmahon of Canada shout for joy after finishing number one over all in the Ironman 70.3 at the Shangri-la Mactan.(CDN PHOTO/CHRISTIAN MANINGO)

Canadian Brent McMahon braved the heat yesterday and easily hurdled every obstacle on the brutal course in winning this year’s Cobra Ironman 70.3 Philippines here.

“I’ve been doing this for a very long time and it’s all about hard work and perseverance,” said McMahon, a two-time, 33-year-old Olympian who placed fifth in the pro category last year.

He exchanged high fives and jiggled to  the blaring music after completing the 1.9-kilometer swim, 90km bike and 21km run in three hours, 59 minutes and five seconds.
Caroline Steffen of Switzerland again ruled the women’s pro division for the third year in a row after clocking 4:32.34 in the race that began and ended at the Shangri-La Mactan Resort and Spa.

Australians Rebecca Hoschke placed second (4:38:34) and Belinda Granger wound up third (4:48:32).

“I love racing here because it’s hot and that’s what I like. It’s very challenging beginning with the swim where the waters were choppy this morning,” said Steffen, who placed second in the 2010 and 2012 Ironman World Championship in Kona, Hawaii.

Called Xena “The Warrior Princess” by her peers and fans, Steffen of Alaska Tri-Aspire team checked in sixth overall behind the top finishers in the men’s open.

Australian Sam Betten came out of the water first from among the thousands of participants but sputtered in the final stretch of the bike segment to finish second (4:07:30) behind McMahon while New Zealand’s Cameron Brown was third in 4:15:44.

“It’s absolutely one of the hottest races I’ve done in my life. Nobody had an easy day out there, scorching yourself physically and mentally,” said the 26-year-old Betten, a perennial Ironman 70.3 contender.

Casey Munro of Australia checked in third overall (4:13:18) but was disqualified by the organizers for non-compliance of the rules, specifically in the bike race.

August Benedicto, who celebrated his birthday Saturday, seized the Filipino men’s elite category in 4:34:55 and Joyette Jopson captured the women’s side (5:28:31).

Other winners in the age category were Jared Kahleldt (men’s 25-29), Tom Dudden (30-34), Assad Attamimi (35-39), Ricardo Tayag (40-44), Gary Hardman (50-54), Alan Nicholls (55-59), Chelsie Tan (women’s 18-24), Ceri Ruzzi (30-34), Carole Fuchs (35-39) and Corine Foster (45-49).

Caroline Steffen of Switzerland dominate the women’s divion of Cobra Ironman 2014 passing through Punta Engano road towards the finish line at Shangri-la Mactan. (CDN PHOTO/ LITO TECSON)

Among the finishers was Inquirer News Editor Artemio Engracia Jr., who punched the air after arriving home in 7:57:56.

McMahon caught up with the 6-foot-5 Betten on the Marcelo Fernan Bridge as they charged to the final transition where the smaller but faster McMahon pulled away for good.

“I knew exactly what I had to do. Go for a solid swim, get out with those guys in the lead and make sure I stick with them,” said McMahon of his third Ironman 70.3 title this year after winning races in Idaho and Hawaii.

“I felt so strong so when I got into the run, I told myself that it’s business time,” he added.

McMahon, whose left leg is shorter by a centimeter which his doctors corrected by putting a heel lift under his left foot, used the race as part of his buildup for the Ironman 70.3 World Championship later this year in Montreal, Quebec, Canada.

“This is really important to prepare for that. I’ll go home and win that race. This is definitely my best year,” said McMahon.

Politicians and celebrities who participated in the full race were Formula One driver Jenson Button, Sen. Pia Cayetano, Gilbert Remulla, Matteo Guidicelli and Kim Atienza while Piolo Pascual, Ryan Agoncillo, Anthony Pangilinan, Maricel Laxa, Gretchen Fullido and Jennylyn Mercado joined the relay.


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McMahon, Steffen bag pro division titles

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TAGS: Brent McMahon, Caroline Steffen, Cobra Ironman 70.3 Philippines, Ironman

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