Currie, Adam win IRONMAN Cairns

Monday 11 June 2018
A three-time IRONMAN world champion returning to the sport and a multi world champion stepping up—the Cairns Airport IRONMAN Asia-Pacific Championship had much in the way of anticipation. In the end, both pre-race superstars played second fiddle to a couple of unlikely New Zealanders who smashed race records on their way to victory—and automatic spots in October’s Holy Grail, the IRONMAN World Championship.

Former multisport and adventure racing star Braden Currie and newcomer Teresa Adam both looked odds-on to give up their respective hard-fought leads on the marathon run to the charging Javier Gomez and Mirinda Carfrae. But both stars lost their twinkle when success seemed just out of reach. Currie clocked 7:54:58, to not only win, but smash the course record of 8:02:17 set last year. Adam claimed the women’s title in just her second IRONMAN in 8:53:16, nearly five minutes inside the race record.

In the men's race, it took 60kms for the chasers to catch a leading quartet on the bike and from that point none could shake clear. Denis Chevrot and then Terenzo Bozzone did edge away to take a one-minute lead onto the run. Currie bridged up to Bozzone within 5kms and Gomez hit the front by10kms running a 3.30 pace. While Bozzone tired, Currie went with the Spaniard to duke it out. As their paced slowed slightly to a 4.10 pace, Currie sensed his moment at the 34km mark with two big 3.50 efforts to break the bungee cord and the title was his. Bozzone gained his second wind to pass a tiring Tim O’Donnell for third.

In the women, Adam, in just her second IRONMAN, took 90kms to round up swim leader Lauren Brandon, with the rest of the field at double digits back in the chase behind. The 28-year-old Kiwi kept her pace as Brandon dropped off over the final 30kms with Adam taking a 5-minute buffer onto the run from Brandon and 11:26 to Carfrae. By 10kms on the run, the gap was down to 6 minutes and at 20 minutes it was 4:30 with Carfrae at times running nearly 30 secs per km faster.

Carfrae, in her first race back after the birth of daughter, found her pace slowing and couldn't close the gap. By 10kms to go, Adam’s pace lifted to 4:20 and she began to move away to win with Carfrae six minutes back and Beth McKenzie, after two years out of the sport, producing the only sub-3 hour run split to climb to third.

Top 5 Pro Men
1 Currie, Braden NZL 7:54:58
2 Gomez, Javier ESP 7:56:38
3 Bozzone, Terenzo NZL 8:00:36
4 O'Donnell, Tim USA 8:00:54
5 Chevrot, Denis FRA 8:07:55

Top 5 Pro Women
1 Adam, Teresa NZL 8:53:16
2 Carfrae, Mirinda AUS 8:59:17
3 McKenzie, Beth USA 9:03:10
4 Frades, Gurutze ESP 9:09:52
5 Burke, Melanie NZL 9:12:31
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