Big names set to clash at Ironman 70.3 Florida

Sebastian Kienle is one of many big name pros expected to compete at Ironman 70.3 Florida. Photo: Kevin Mackinnon

Earlier this week we wrote about a stacked field getting set to compete at Ironman 70.3 Texas, today we can report on possibly an even stronger field on tap for Ironman 70.3 Florida on April 18, including 2014 Ironman world champion Sebastian Kienle.

The event hasn’t had a pro field since 2014, but pro racing is returning with a bang to the event just outside of Orlando thanks to the impressive list of pro men and women who are on the start list. You can see the entire list here.

International contingent on hand

Possibly signalling their intention to race at the Ironman (Tulsa) and/ or the 70.3 (St. George) North American Championships a number of big name Europeans are on the start list for the race in Florida, including two-time 70.3 world champion and 2014 Kona champ Kienle. Joe Skipper, who won and set a new course record at Ironman Florida in 2019 is also on the list, as is 2019 Challenge Roth champion Andi Dreitz. American Matt Hanson, a multiple Ironman North America champ, will wear race number one in Florida – renowned as one of the sport’s best runners, the Europeans will no-doubt do everything they can to make sure he’s not close off the bike. Others to keep an eye on come race day include Canadian Jackson Laundry, American Matt Russell, Germany’s Florian Angert, South Africa’s Bradley Weiss and Great Britain’s Thomas Davis.

South African connection

Two of the women likely to be considered pre-race favorites are South Africa’s Jeanni Metzler (nee Seymour), who heads into next weekend’s Ironman 70.3 Texas as the defending champion, and a woman who has made South Africa home for the last while, Emma Pallant (GBR), a former 70.3 worlds runner-up. Also wearing the favorite badge will be Americans Heather Jackson, a former podium finisher at both the Ironman and 70.3 world championships, and Skye Moench, the defending Ironman European champion. Other American’s in the field to keep an eye on include Lisa Becharas and Lesley Smith, while Great Britain’s Simone Mitchell could also be in the mix, too.