Ironman 70.3 European Championship: Michael Raelert claims the title again
Wiesbaden- Michael Raelert won the Ironman 70.3 European Championship today in Wiesbaden. The 31-year old won the title for the second time after 2010. "I'm very happy with my race", the younger one of the Raelert-Brothers said. He not only won the race in a dominant style ahead of Bart Aernouts from Belgium and Boris Stein (Germany), he also improved the course record in 4:03:58 hours. "It was a tough day, a really tough race", the two-time winner of the World Championships said after finishing the race in front of the Kurhaus in Wiesbaden, "the more I am pleased with this victory. I'm glad that I was able to bring the european title back into the family. "
In the swim Michael Raelert set the basis for his second triumph in Wiesbaden. Only a few days after the Olympics, world class athlete Ivan Vasiliev from Russia marked a very fast pace in the first discipline. The 13thof the olympic race in London came out of the water in first position after 21:51 minutes. He was two seconds ahead of Michael Raelert, who was third behind Vasiliev and Frenchman Stephane Poulat. Then Michael Raelert took over the lead in the transition zone and started onto the
challenging bike course of 90 kilometers in first place. "It's a beautiful but very selective course, and there was a strong field", Michael Raelert mentioned later. On the bike he determined the pace with Vasiliev, Poulat, Mikel Elgezabal from Spain and Aernouts, while one of favorites, Filip Ospaly from the Czech Republic lost some time.
After 2:27:58 hours on the bike Michael Raelert reached T2 in second position, directly behind the Spaniard Elgezabal. Again he was the fastest man in the transition and led the strong pro field onto the run. In the first few kilometers of the 21.1 km long run course Aernouts was still behind him, but soon Michael Raelert extended his lead. Halfway through the run course Aernouts was about a minute behind, on the finish line it was 2:30 minutes. Michael Raelert finished his excellent race with a strong run split of 1:11:16 hours. "The race was very important to me", the new European champion said with satisfaction after his victory in a new race record.
The European Championship was the first of three highlights for Michael Raelert in the second half of the season. On September 9th follows the Ironman 70.3 World Championship in Las Vegas, on October 13th there will be his debut race at the Ironman Hawaii. "The first goal out of three is well done", Michael Raelert said in Wiesbaden, "the victory is a big motivation." After his victory he addressed a special thanks to his family and friends. "The support along the way
was huge", Michael Raelert said smilingly, "a special thanks to Stefano BMC for his support before and during the race."