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Ironman Frankfurt 2014: Past Performances and Kona Qualification

Next in the Ironman calendar is Frankfurt, the European Championship. It’s a fast and competitive race, just like last weekend’s Ironman Austria, in fact remarkably similar to Austria when times are compared. It takes a top performance to place at the front of pack in Germany, but with 100 Kona slots on offer as a championship race it also comes with slightly better qualification odds. If sub-10 is a goal either Austria or Frankfurt will do, if qualification is the target then Frankfurt edges out Austria.

More detailed, age group specific information is available at the bottom of this post.

Median Splits by Age Group at Ironman Frankfurt 2003-2013
Median Splits by Category at 2013 European Ironman Races
Median Splits by Age Group at Ironman Austria 2005-2013

Three charts to consider: the median splits from 10 years of racing in Frankfurt, the medians for the 2013 season of racing in Europe and the averages for 9 years of racing in Austria. Firstly comparing with the European averages we can see that Frankfurt is, as described, at the faster end of the Ironman spectrum; this is true of all three disciplines, but most significant on the bike. In contrast comparing the medians with those from Austria and the variance is much smaller, in fact splits are remarkably similar.

Distribution of Finisher Splits at Ironman Frankfurt 2003-2013
Distribution of Finishers' Splits at 2013 European Ironman Races
Distribution of Finisher Splits at Ironman Austria 2005-2013

The distributions confirm the observations on the averages. Frankfurt has faster distributions than the European races in general and those distributions are strikingly similar to the set from Austria. The differences are subtle – there’s really little to choose between these two races when it comes to performances.

Predicted Kona Slot Allocation for Ironman Frankfurt 2014
  Number of Athletes Number of Slots
F18-24 6 1
F25-29 24 2
F30-34 54 2
F35-39 66 3
F40-44 50 2
F45-49 37 2
F50-54 28 2
F55-59 9 1
F60-64 1 1
M18-24 30 2
M25-29 163 5
M30-34 410 12
M35-39 493 14
M40-44 591 17
M45-49 531 15
M50-54 313 10
M55-59 105 4
M60-64 22 2
M65-69 10 1
M70-74 5 1
M75-79 2 1
Total 2950 100

It’s the above estimated slot distribution where the differences come into play. One hundred available slots means a much bigger allocation to each age group, with the M40-44 getting in the region of 17 slots. More slots will also mean there’s a greater chance of some roll down taking place. Where a top 5 finish might be needed to qualify it may now need a top 15 or 20 finish instead. That’s not necessarily easier and the times are still fast, but every little helps.

Top Twenty Male Performances and Kona Qualification by Age Group at Ironman Frankfurt
Top Twenty Female Performances and Kona Qualification by Age Group at Ironman Frankfurt

Levels of competition in Germany are comparable with Austria. After a few outlying athletes fill the age group podium there’s minimal drop off in time for each placing. In absolute terms the fastest times here aren’t quite at the level of the fastest times in Austria. With the extra slots average qualifying times fall about 10 to 15 minutes slower than Austria in the men’s field, ranging from 9:15-9:35 at the outside. The trend is similar for the women’s field too, times are slower, but due to the low number of female participants the available slots are also few in number.

For a lot more detail in individual age groups download one of the PDFs below.

Detailed Age Group Statistics

Age group specific Ironman Frankfurt results analysis. More charts and more detailed timings and splits for top age grouper and Kona qualifiers.

Select an age group to view or download PDF

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As usual I’ll download and analyse this year’s race at the start of next week.

All Ironman Results and Statistics

A growing collection of results and statistics for the whole Ironman race calendar.

Find out what it takes to place in your age group or to qualify for the Ironman Worlds Championships in Kona.

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