Germany claims double Ironman victory in historic first | News | DW | 13.10.2019
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Germany claims double Ironman victory in historic first

Anne Haug has become the first German woman to win the Ironman World Championship in Hawaii. Germany also dominated the men's race, with Jan Frodeno setting a new course record and scooping his third title.

Anne Haug and Jan Frodeno (above) made history on Saturday by claiming Germany's first ever double gold at the Ironman triathlon in Hawaii.

"It's fantastic, I can hardly believe it myself," Haug told German public broadcaster ARD after crossing the finish line.

The 36-year-old is the first German woman to win the gruelling race, which comprises a 3.8-kilometer (2.36-mile) swim, 180-km bike ride and 42.2-km run.

Anne Haug sprays water over herself as she rides her bike (picture-alliance/dpa/M. Garcia)

Anne Haug was eight minutes behind when she started the last leg of the race

Frodeno, the 2008 Olympic champion, set a new course record with his unofficial time of seven hours, 51 minutes and 13 seconds —more than 3 minutes faster than the previous record set by compatriot Patrick Lange in 2018.

"My legs are shattered," the 38-year-old said. "I don't care about the record. I won here, in the Wimbledon of our sport, and that's a great feeling."

Frodeno set a cracking pace from the start and worked up a comfortable lead throughout the entire course. It was a different story for Haug, who had to close an eight-minute gap to overtake Britain's Lucy Charles-Barclay during the final marathon stretch. Charles-Barclay came in second, while Australian Sarah Crowley finished in third place.

Frodeno is the first German to win the event three times, following previous victories in 2015 and 2016.

Fellow German Sebastian Kienle claimed third place, behind Tim O'Donnell of the US. Lange — who won in 2017 and 2018 — pulled out during the bike leg after reportedly suffering a fever.

Watch video 02:35

The Hard Way: Triathlete Sebastian Kienle

nm/bk (Reuters, dpa)

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