CoachCox

Ironman Wisconsin 2015: Results and Analysis

The second Ironman race of the weekend was Ironman Wisconsin. Like a number of other Ironman races in the US this year there was no pro race in Wisconsin. Despite this the race winner was an MPRO, I guess nothing bars a pro entering these races other than the lack of prize money or Kona points. For the age groupers there were 50 Kona slots on offer at this race. Results from the 2015 event suggest it was a largely typical year, just slightly slower across the age groups.

Distribution of Finisher Splits at Ironman Wisconsin 2015 Compared With 2002-2014

Comparing this years finisher distributions with those from the previous 13 years shows that each discipline trended behind the historic averages. In each case the difference is small, but they add up to a slightly bigger shift in finishing times. Even then we’re not looking at a large enough change to indicate significant differences in race conditions or levels of age group competition.

Median Splits by Age Group at Ironman Wisconsin 2015
Median Splits by Age Group at Ironman Wisconsin 2002-2014

Differences in median splits vary with age groups. The under thirties appear to have trended faster at this years race, while the biggest age groups over thirty come out a touch slower. Differences come mostly on the bike and as with the distributions up top they aren’t particularly significant.

Changes in Male Age Group Finishing Times by Place at Ironman Wisconsin
Changes in Female Age Group Finishing Times by Place at Ironman Wisconsin

Tracking how times within the age groups have changed over time at Wisconsin puts 2015 as one of the slower years. It’s not the slowest year seen in Wisconsin and it doesn’t deviate too far from recent results.

Top Twenty Male Performances and Kona Qualification by Age Group at Ironman Wisconsin 2015
Top Twenty Female Performances and Kona Qualification by Age Group at Ironman Wisconsin 2015

At the front of the age group race we see a different trend – if anything times here are ahead of the race averages. Not by huge margins though, but while the field as a whole appears a little slower the competition for slots wasn’t.

So overall it looks like a typical year of racing in Wisconsin (without a pro field) that produced slightly slower results. I wouldn’t read too much into this though, the change is small and well within the bounds of chance rather than an indication of significant variation in race conditions.

You can access a spreadsheet of the full results and splits from Ironman Wisconsin 2015 on my Google Drive.

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Comments

  • Rob

    Hi Russell have you ever compared US v’s European races and athletes? Which are more competitive and who are faster, the speedo wearing euros or the yanks?
    Rob

  • I have made that comparison, but it was a while back now. Here’s a couple of pieces I put up on it:

    http://www.coachcox.co.uk/2012/11/15/who-are-faster-europeans-or-north-americans/

    http://www.coachcox.co.uk/2013/02/06/the-national-average-ironman/

    I leaned towards Europeans being faster overall (certainly European races are in general). It’s hard to pin down though, lots of variables and generally American athletes race in the US and Europeans in Europe. I also didn’t test by gender and I suspect that would have a fair influence on things too (far more women as proportion of the field in the US). Perhaps I should revisit this.

    I think that generally US races see the biggest entries and far more competitors looking to complete as a proportion of that field. Even the biggest Euro races seem to have slightly higher percentages looking to compete. Much of it is simply attitudes towards racing.