There was no touching Taylor Knibb today at Ironman 70.3 Oceanside. From start to finish, the American Short-Distance athlete dominated the race. Knibb ended up sharing the podium with Brazil’s Luisa Baptista and Britain’s Holly Lawrence.
Just like in the men’s race, in the women’s race a group was formed in the water. Knibb may have noted the fastest swim time, she didn’t manage to create a gap to leaders like Brazil’s Pamella Oliveira, Batista, America’s Lauren Brandon and Lawrence, who followed in her slipstream. That meant Knibb had to dig deep right from the start of the bike part. Findlay was 1:50 minute down after the swim part, exiting in 7th place, while Ryf reached her bike in 8th place, 1:59 minute down to the leader.
Once in the saddle, Knibb dictated some impressive speed, that no other athlete managed to match. Surprisingly, only Baptista was able to stay close to her; the Brazilian athlete biked in second place. From behind, Findlay slowly moved up, while Ryf tried to get to the front too. Ryf clearly struggled to do so more than Findlay. With about 20 km to go, Findlay didn’t only leave Ryf behind, she also took over Lawrence, which saw her settling in third.
Lawrence didn’t just accept her third place. Just before T2, she biked back to second, passing both Findlay and Baptista. On the run, Knibb continued what she started, and that means she was untouchable for her competitors. Baptista ran back to second, while Lawrence settled in third place. That remained unchanged until the finish. Running a 1:17:48-hour half-marathon, Knibb broke the tape. Baptista claimed the silver medal (+2:13) and Lawrence took place on the last podium spot (+2:45).