4 Mar 2012

Belgian and American claim New Zealand ironman title

2:37 pm on 4 March 2012

Belgian athlete Marino Vanhoenacker has claimed the New Zealand ironman title in Taupo, dashing local hopes of a fairytale 11th title for local hope Cameron Brown.

Brown, who's dominated the race for over a decade, came in third, behind Tim Reed of Australia, and 36 year old Vanhoenacker.

The women's race proved one-way traffic for American Meredith Kessler in her first major international event outside of North America.

Kessler was never threatened with the fastest run split to win in 4:22.46, eight minutes ahead of the chasers.

Australia's Kate Bevilaqua managed to hold on to second place by just three seconds from the fast finishing seven time winner New Zealander Jo Lawn.