Funk and Salthouse Make Historic Wins at Inaugural Challenge Samarkand

Monday 18 September 2023

Frederic Funk (DEU) posted a blistering bike split to take the win at today’s inaugural Challenge Samarkand while it was a start to finish win for Ellie Salthouse (AUS), marking the first international middle distance race in Uzbekistan.

There were no surprises as Aaron Royle (AUS) exited the water first in 25:03 with Funk 44 seconds down in second. On the bike, Funk immediately went into catch up mode, looking to close the gap with speeds of up to 61kph on the fast flat course. He finally caught Royle on the first of the few climbs on course at around 17km and he never looked back as he took control of the race. His lead on the bike was never threatened as he continued to push the speed and he arrived into T2 2:25 ahead of Royle with a fast transition putting him exiting T2 as Royle crossed the dismount line. His bike split was 1:53:35. Once out on the dead flat run around the rowing lake, Funk continued to hold his lead looking unthreatened throughout. However, behind him Filipe Azevedo (POR) started making time on Royle but it was short-lived. By the halfway point on the run, it was clear that nothing short of a disaster could prevent Funk from making history, taking the inaugural Challenge Samarkand win in 3:38:34. Behind him Royle took second in 3:41:35 and Azevedo took third in 3:43:45.

"The swim was OK, I tried to keep it controlled and also managed to lose not too much time to Aaron and then on the bike I tried to push," said Funk. "But after one lap someone pulled the plug and I could barely push over 300W but I just tried to get as aero as possible. It was a really fast course and aerodynamics played a big role. The run felt good and controlled and I knew that if I had a good gap into the second half I could beat Aaron. I’m really happy to take the win. This is already a really iconic race and I can’t wait to explore the city." 

In the women, as expected Ellie Salthouse (AUS) exited the water in first in 26:45 but only two seconds clear of Lottie Lucas (UAE) and four seconds ahead of Margie Santimaria (ITA). Emma Pallant-Browne (GBR) was nearly a minute down in fourth. However, once on the bike, it wasn’t long before Pallant-Browne had ridden up into second place but Salthouse was not giving away her lead. Knowing Pallant-Browne’s strength on the run she did everything to extend her lead, pushing speeds of up to 59kph. By the 40km mark her lead had doubled to 2:30 and she never looked anything but comfortable. By the time Salthouse arrived into T2, she had extended her lead to over six minutes on Pallant-Browne. Pallant-Browne is renowned for her running prowess, but it was Salthouse who held the power today. A 30 second stop-go penalty for Pallant-Browne for racking her bike incorrectly effectively sealed the deal and Salthouse took a clear win, having led from start to finish in 4:02:54. Pallant-Browne crossed the line in second in 4:12:50, clearly having left everything out on course in the testing hot and windy conditions. Margie Santimaria rounded out the podium in third in 4:18:16.

"It wasn’t easy – a very tough course, the headwind out there was ridiculous but then the tailwind was great," said Salthouse. "It had a nice combination of climbing, downhils and cobblestones, a mix of everything, a really exciting day and I was happy to take the win. I was actually running a bit scared as obviously you never want Emma running you down, to have her behind me is a little scary but when I found out I was opening the gap, I was a bit surprised. We don’t have this kind of history in Australia so to be able to come here and experience the downtown area with the UNESCO heritage sites, it’s unlike anything else to be able to ride straight down the middle of that. I think this race definitely has big things coming and I encourage everyone to come next year and see what it’s all about." 

MALE PRO:
1 Frederic Funk 3:38:34
2 Aaron Royle 3:41:35
3 Filipe Azevedo 3:43:45
4 Gaetan Fetaud 3:55:25
5 Luke Mathews 3:57:57

FEMALE PRO:
1 Ellie Salthouse 4:02:54
2 Emma Pallant-Browne 4:12:50
3 Margie Santimaria 4:18:16
4 Lottie Lucas 4:23:58

For full results visit https://www.athlinks.com/event/381440/results/Event/1060796/Course/2400601/Results and for further information, visit www.challenge-samarkand.com.

CHALLENGE Family


Coming Triathlon Events View all

Challenge Israman

Eilat, Israel

Website Google Map YouTube

Strongman

Miyakojima, Okinawa, Japan

Website Google Map

Challenge Taiwan

Taitung City, Taiwan, China

Website Google Map YouTube

FrenchMan

Carcans, France

Website Google Map YouTube

Himalayan Xtreme

Pokhara, Nepal

Website Google Map YouTube

Grizzlyman Xtri

Beskydy, Czech Republic

Website Google Map

Mediterranean Epic

Oropesa del Mar, Spain

Website Google Map YouTube

Tradeinn International

Platja d’Aro, Spain

Website Google Map YouTube

AlpsMan

Annecy, France

Website Google Map YouTube

Pirene Xtreme

Cellers, Lleida, Spain

Website Google Map YouTube

Ironman New Zealand

Taupo, New Zealand

Website Google Map YouTube

Ironman African Championship

Port Elizabeth, South Africa

Website Google Map YouTube

Ironman Texas

The Woodlands, Texas, United States

Website Google Map

Ironman Australia

Port Macquarie, Australia

Website Google Map YouTube

Ironman Lanzarote

Canary Islands, Spain

Website Google Map YouTube

Ironman Florianopolis

Florianopolis, Brazil

Website Google Map

Ironman Hamburg

Hamburg, Germany

Website Google Map YouTube

Ironman Philippines

Subic Bay, Philippines

Website Google Map YouTube

Ironman France

Nice, France

Website Google Map YouTube

Ironman Austria

Klagenfurt, Austria

Website Google Map YouTube

Husky Long Course

Huskisson, NSW, Australia

Website Google Map YouTube

Coles Bay Half

Coles Bay, TAS, Australia

Website Google Map

Challenge Malaysia

Forest City, Johor, Malaysia

Website Google Map

Challenge Puerto Varas

Puerto Varas, Chile

Website Google Map

Ayia Napa Triathlon

Ayia Napa, Cyprus

Website Google Map

Hell of the West

Goondiwindi, QLD, Australia

Website Google Map YouTube

Alpha Win Ocala

Ocala, FL, United States

Website Google Map YouTube

Alpha Win Napa Valley

Napa Valley, CA, United States

Website Google Map YouTube

Tri Tour Deltebre

Deltebre, Spain

Website Google Map YouTube

Setubal Triathlon

Setubal, Portugal

Website Google Map

70.3 Panama

Panama City, Panama

Website Google Map YouTube

70.3 New Zealand

Taupo, New Zealand

Website Google Map YouTube

70.3 Punta del Este

Maldonado, Uruguay

Website Google Map

70.3 Puerto Rico

San Juan, Puerto Rico

Website Google Map

70.3 Geelong

Geelong, Australia

Website Google Map YouTube

70.3 Oceanside

Oceanside, California, United States

Website Google Map

70.3 Texas

Galveston Island, Texas, United States

Website Google Map

70.3 San Juan

San Juan, Argentina

Website Google Map YouTube

70.3 Monterrey

Monterrey, Mexico

Website Google Map YouTube

70.3 Florianopolis

Florianopolis, Brazil

Website Google Map

Triathlon News & Media Blogs View all

T100 Tri Tour Adds Escape from Alcatraz to Schedule

T100 Tri Tour Adds Escape from Alcatraz to Schedule

Monday 19 Feb 2024 [Triathlon News]

The Professional Triathletes Organisation (PTO) and World Triathlon are pleased to announce that the California leg of its new T100 Triathlon World Tour will take place in San Francisco at the iconic Escape from Alcatraz Triathlon on 8-9 June, in a partnership with IMG. Known as the San Francisco T100, the 100km race (2km swim, 80km bike, 18km run) will be set in the stunning San Francisco Bay area more

Els Visser, Kyle Smith Win CHALLENGE Wanaka NZL

Els Visser, Kyle Smith Win CHALLENGE Wanaka NZL

Saturday 17 Feb 2024 [Triathlon News]

Two convincing victories were earned today at Challenge Wanaka by Kyle Smith (NZL) and Els Visser (NED) as they took the first Challenge Family titles of 2024. Smith led from the start with a lead that never looked under threat, taking the win in 3:53:08 while Visser showed her domination on the bike, giving her a comfortable lead into the testing Wanaka run, crossing the line in 4:34:46. more

Pro Athlete Line Up for Challenge Wanaka NZL

Pro Athlete Line Up for Challenge Wanaka NZL

Friday 16 Feb 2024 [Triathlon News]

Reigning champions Jack Moody (NZL) and Grace Thek (AUS) are set to defend their titles at the highly anticipated 2024 Integrity Homes Challenge Wanaka, showcasing an impressive lineup for the pro race on Saturday 17 February which will also feature latest anti-drafting technology, Race Ranger. Since turning professional in 2018, Grace Thek from Australia has achieved remarkable success, podiuming in 20 out of 36 middle-distance races. In 2023, she secured three victories. more

IRONMAN announced 70.3 Canada Penticton

IRONMAN announced 70.3 Canada Penticton

Wednesday 14 Feb 2024 [Triathlon News]

IRONMAN announced today the return of the IRONMAN® 70.3® Canada triathlon which will be added in Penticton, British Columbia, providing additional racing in 2024. The IRONMAN 70.3 Canada half-distance race, which first took place from 2016-2019 in Whistler, British Columbia, is scheduled to return on Sunday, Aug. 25 in conjunction with the full-distance IRONMAN Canada triathlon. more

Sodaro & Thompson Claim Victory At 70.3 Tasmania

Sodaro & Thompson Claim Victory At 70.3 Tasmania

Sunday 04 Feb 2024 [Triathlon News]

Nick Thompson and Chelsea Sodaro have claimed victory at IRONMAN 70.3 Tasmania on a wet and wild day in Hobart. Thompson claimed his second IRONMAN 70.3 victory on Sunday, while for Sodaro it was her first win since taking out the 2022 VinFast IRONMAN World Championship. Thompson crossed the line in 3:54:10, almost four minutes ahead of Mitch Kibby, with hometown hero Cameron Wurf rounding out the podium. more

Facebook


YouTube


Sign up for FREE NEWSLETTER:

We will never share your email address or spam you.