Whereas the men’s race of Challenge Gran Canaria was very exciting until the very last meters – Sam Laidlow eventually won – the women’s race was dominated by only one woman: Anne Haug. For fans all over the world, the live stream of the race was unfortunately very disappointing, but still Challenge Gran Canaria was one not soon to forget.
This was mainly due to the excitement in the men’s race. Sam Laidlow had indicated beforehand that he very much wanted to win Challenge Gran Canaria and so he did. He had to fight hard for it, because although there was a large leading group during the swim that became smaller and smaller during the bike ride, he could not get rid of two competitors during the run: Mathis Margirier (French, like Laidlow) and Australian Aaron Royle. For nearly 21 kilometers, they ran a few seconds apart and several times in different order.
Laidlow, however, did not let himself get crazy, kept his head cool and won the race in a time of 3:40:27, just thirteen seconds ahead of Margirier in second place. Royle thus had to settle for bronze, just over a minute after Laidlow won Challenge Gran Canaria.
The women’s race was completely different, as there it was clear pretty quickly that Anne Haug was supreme. During the swim and the first kilometers on the bike, her compatriot Caroline Pohle was still able to keep up, but after that Haug went on a solo adventure and didn’t see anyone for the rest of the day. She won the race in a time of 4:05:38, giving her a huge lead over her competitors. The Dutch Diede Diederiks was second (4:17:52) and Megan McDonald was third.