Pieter Heemeryck just delivered yet another great performance this season: he took the win at Ironman Cascais. Among a magnificent field, with big appealing names like Jan Stratmann, Patrick Lange and Dylan Magnien, the Belgian proved to be the strongest. In the women’s race, one lady was supreme: France’s Marjolaine Pierre.
After the swim, Heemeryck had a relatively small deficit of 1:10 minute to make up: when he came out of the water after 48:03 minutes, Joshua Lewis, Stratmann, Lange and Antonio Benito López were in front of him. On the bike, however, that quickly changed, and within just a few kilometers he had outsmarted both Lange and López. A few kilometers later, Heemeryck also caught up with Stratmann and Lewis and after only ten kilometers on the bike the Belgian had already done what he had to do and what he is always good at: riding to the front. Meanwhile, Dane Thor Bendix Madsen also joined from behind, creating a leading group of four.
While the lead of the four grew pretty quickly and had already grown to 3:30 minutes on Lange, Lopez, Magnien, Joao Ferreira and Will Crudgington after 50 kilometers, not much later Madsen would show that he had the best bike legs. The Dane saw his lead over Stratmann and Lewis grow to over a minute, while Heemeryck lost much more time in the closing stages of the bike and started the marathon more than five minutes behind.
During that marathon, however, Heemeryck quickly cut time from his deficit, although at first it was Stratmann who took the lead from Madsen after only a few kilometers. Halfway through the run, Heemeryck had already advanced to second place, but was still more than two minutes behind Stratmann. That would not last long, as Heemeryck was running so much faster that he had already made up those two minutes six kilometers later and had turned them into a one-minute lead. With fourteen kilometers to go, the victory could hardly escape Heemeryck.
That did not happen and Heemeryck won the race in 7:50:07. Magnien eventually finished second in 7:52:17. López claimed the bronze in a time of 7:54:01.
Marjolaine Pierre next-level
In the women’s race, one woman was really dominant and that was Marjolaine Pierre. After the swim, she was still third, 1:53 minutes behind Marta Sanchez and 15 seconds behind Emma Bilham. On the bike, however, Pierre took the lead within ten kilometers and on the bike her lead only increased. In T2, Pierre was 7:38 minutes ahead of Anne Reischmann and Sanches followed at more than ten minutes.
During the run, Reischmann did initially get a little closer, but it never really became dangerous for Pierre. She eventually won the race in 8:49:52. Reischmann finished second in 8:55:22. Irish Olivia Mitchell finished third in 9:01:07.