Eastern Cape
Ben Hoffman wins 2017 Iron Man in Port Elizabeth

Defending champion Ben Hoffman has retained his title by winning the 2017 Iron Man African Championships in Port Elizabeth.

Hoffman also made history by breaking the course record finishing at a time of seven hours fifty seven minutes.

The 13th African Championships attracted professional cyclists from all over the world with sixty mine nations being represented in 2017 championship.

The African Championship serve as qualifiers for the World Championships taking place in Hawaii later in 2017.

As early as 6 o’clock this morning more than 2000 athletes took to the sea for the 3. 8 kilometres swim. Leading the men was Josh Hamberber and the Daniela Ryf led the women athletes.

But when it got to the cycling defending champion, Ben Hoffman and Cameron Wurf were neck and neck.

Hoffman then proved to strong and dominated the cycle far ahead of the rest. The defending champion not only retained his title, but also broke the course
record.

Hoffman says: “It’s obviously very awesome to win a race, it’s what you train for and to defend a title. I mean I have won six iron mans but this is the first time I have defended an iron man title.”

In the ladies race, defending champion Kasia Lehtonen was a good contender as defending champion. But the determination of Daniela Ryf proved to strong.

She dominated throughout the race and eventually took first place.

“I was a bit injured before the race; I couldn’t train for almost a week. I didn’t know I will be able to finish on Sunday.”

South Africa’s favourite Kyle Buckingham took fourth place. The organisers say they are delighted with the growth of the event.

Photo: Dirk Erasmus

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