There was once a time when Vernon’s Heather Wurtele needed a lead off the bike discipline to win a triathlon.
That was then. This is now.
Wurtele has shown she can now post super-quick splits when needed.
Two weeks ago, she won the Ironman 70.3 in Monterrey, Mexico where she posted a 1:19 run split.
On Saturday, Wurtele went even faster (1:17:56)to win the Ironman California in Oceanside.
Wurtele’s winning time of four hours 13 minutes and 12 seconds was a course record, and was 63 seconds faster than defending champion American Heather Jackson.
Meredith Kessler of the U.S. was third at 4:19:52.
Kessler and Julie Dibens of the U.K. led the way out of the water.
Dibens, in her first race after a year away from the sport recovering from foot and knee surgery, pulled away on the bike, enjoying a lead of around two minutes on a group that included Wurtele, Jackson and Kessler.
There was just no stopping Wurtele on the run.
She moved to the front by the four-mile point of the race and never relinquished the lead, en route to her second consecutive victory.
Wurtele’s husband, Trevor, enjoyed a top-10 finish in the men’s race, placing eighth in 3:58:48.
Trevor completed the swim in 25:29, the bike in 2:15:56 and finished with a 1:14:25 run.
Top Canadian man was Victoria’s Brent McMahon, who finished fifth in 3:55:46.
The men’s event was won by 2008 Olympic gold medalist Jan Frodeno of Germany in 3:49:25.