Let that sink in. It’s fast, right! In fact, it’s the fastest time ever over a full-distance triathlon course. Let us break it down: 45:22 2.4-mile swim, 4:08:07 112-mile bike and a 2:39:18 marathon run. There were a couple transitions in there too. We could give you splits or you could just trust us: they were quick.
This day and age it takes a lot to break a world record. It’s something extraordinary to crush it by almost six minutes.
That’s exactly what the German superstar Jan Frodeno presented the 15th DATEV Challenge Roth Triathlon with – a sensational world record over the 226km distance. Frodeno’s time beat Andreas Raelert’s former record of 7:41:33 set on the same course. Roth has a special place in the lure of triathlon history presenting athletes with a unique opportunity to push the boundaries of long-distance triathlon with a fast course, amazing crowds and incredible athlete support. As the official swim course sponsor, we're honored to be a part of such an incredible accomplishment.
Frodeno announced half a year ago that he had Raelert’s record in his sights when he revealed he would be racing Challenge Roth for the first time. On the day Frodeno not only faced a highly competitive field but also perfect conditions: high cloud, warm temperatures and practically no wind.
Frodeno led from the start although he was not lonely: thousands cheered him on towards the finish line. Frodeno was in a class of his own in the swim and also had no competition on the bike, despite a minor fall on the second lap. “That probably brought me more time thanks to the extra adrenaline surge I got from the crash,” said Frodeno afterwards.
After the finish Frodeno said, “Now I understand why this is the greatest of all races.” That’s high praise from an Olympic and World Champion.
The UK’s Joe Skipper finished 20 minutes behind the champion in 7:56:23 while last year’s defending champion, Nils Frommhold earned third, also coming under the eight-hour mark in 7:57:59.
In the women’s race, Swiss superstar Daniela Ryf set out on course record pace. The current world champion dominated from start to finish, taking the win in 8:22:04, but couldn’t beat the incomparable Chrissie Wellington’s world record time of 8:18:13, set in 2011.
Ryf was first female out of the water in 49:10 and only three of the men managed to swim faster. Wellington, who was spectating on the sidelines during the race expressed some concern for her world record. Ryf was nearly ten minutes faster on the bike course than the British athlete but she failed to match Wellington’s blistering marathon pace. “I hope to come back again” she said at the finish line. Her time was the third fastest ever over triathlon’s long distance.
blueseventy athlete Carrie Lester delivered a second-place finish with a personal best of 8:42:13. The Australian claimed the same position last year and only had admiration post race; "There is no other race in triathlon that can replicate the energy and atmosphere that is Challenge Roth. From the moment you arrive you can feel the energy and excitement from the crowds and they are there to support you all day.” Yvonne van Vlerken took third place.