Joe Skipper overcomes adversity and wins Ironman Wales

(Archive photo: James Mitchell)

What happened at about 60K into the bike part remains unclear, but for a while it seemed like Joe Skipper’s race would be over when he dropped back from second to 11th place and consequently suffered a deficit of 23 minutes. However, Skipper fought his way back to the front and ended up winning Ironman Wales. With a finish time of 8:35:49 hours, Skipper claimed the gold. Second place was for Germany’s Boris Stein and France’s Kevin Maurel took third.

After the swim part, Skipper was quite far behind the first man – Britain’s Andrew Horsfall-Turner – but still he was in an alright fourth place. 5:09 minutes after the race leader, Skipper took his bike out of T1. Stein exited the water in sixth place (+8:02).

Horsfall-Turner was able to stay in the lead for quite a while, but Stein and Skipper tried to hunt him down from behind. Stein did very well, just as Skipper, but for Skipper that stopped when he had an issue 60K into the bike ride. Skipper suddenly dropped back, but after fixing the problem, Skipper was able to continue his race and move back to the front.

After 180 km of cycling, Horsfall-Turner was still in first position. Stein racked his bike in T2 in second place (+4:36) and Skipper was fifth to start the run (+15:53).

Skipper already made up twelve minutes and two positions in the first half-marathon. 30K into the run, Skipper had managed to take over the lead. With an impressive marathon of 2:37:25 hours, Skipper got to break the tape. Stein took second and Maurel finished in third place.