Bennetts Best in Raleigh
RALEIGH, NC - Just as they did in 2009 at IRONMAN 70.3 Augusta, Laura and Greg Bennett both won the same 70.3 race today in Raleigh. Laura (USA) used her Olympic leg-speed for a come-from-behind victory on the run, while Greg (AUS) took control of the race early on the bike and went on to a 13:17 winning margin.
Running to the win
Laura Bennett exited the water with a lead of 1:34 over Anna Cleaver (NZL) and 1:49 on race-favorite Emma Kate Lidbury (GBR). Melanie McQuaid was next out, 3:44 back, while the rest of the field was over six-minutes behind.
Lidbury worked her way into the lead during the first half of the bike - she was up by four seconds at the halfway point and expanded that lead to two minutes by T2. McQuaid found herself 3:28 down, with the rest of the field all over ten-minutes behind.
Four miles into the run Bennett had eliminated all but three seconds of her deficit as she ran just off Lidbury's shoulder. A couple of miles later Bennett was clear, running a minute ahead of Lidbury, with McQuaid trailing six minutes behind.
In the end Bennett finished in 4:17:18, with Lidbury 3:57 behind in second. McQuaid rounded out the podium just under 10 minutes back.
Greg Bennett's Impressive Bike
TJ Tollakson (USA) set the pace in the water, exiting Lake Jordan with a three-second advantage over Bennett. Henry Hagenbuck (USA) was next to hit the boat ramp, 2:10 off the lead pair's pace, while the remainder of the field found themselves starting the bike with over a three-minute deficit.
Bennett took the lead in the early miles of the bike and built on it through the 56-miles of rural road. Tollakson managed to stay close to Bennett over the opening half of the ride but, by T2, the lead was up to 3:52, with the remainder of the field another five minutes behind.
Bennett, a former Olympian himself, put his short-course run speed to good use, outpacing the entire field. Tollakson faded out of podium-contention in the second half of the run. In the end Paul Eicher (USA) and Kyle Pawaczyk worked their way into second and third. Bennett's 1:17:22 run split got him to the line 13:17 ahead of Eicher, with Pawlaczyk another minute behind.
Professional men's results
1 BENNETT, Greg AUS 3:51:24
2 EICHER, Paul USA 4:04:41
3 PAWLACZYK, Kyle USA 4:05:41
4 RAU, Ryan USA 4:06:55
5 HAGENBUCH, Henry USA 4:09:00
6 BATES, Ryan USA 4:11:18
7 TOLLAKSON, Tj USA 4:14:01
8 WOOD, Tom USA 4:14:09
9 HEILIG, Andrej DEU 4:18:47
10 HOLDERBAUM, Chad USA 4:21:56
Professional women's results
1 BENNETT, Laura USA 4:17:18
2 LIDBURY, Emma-Kate GBR 4:21:14
3 MCQUAID, Melanie CAN 4:26:56
4 JACOBS, Jessica USA 4:28:19
5 SHUTT, Beth USA 4:32:31
6 ROOHI, Molly USA 4:38:30
7 FILLNOW, Kelly USA 4:40:59
8 ZELAZO, Suzanne CAN 4:44:33
9 MIGHDOLL, Michelle USA 5:03:32
10 MCAMMOND, Jordan USA 5:17:37