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Ironman Florida 2016: Age Group Results and Kona Qualification

Ironman Florida took place two days ago – this analysis is a little later than usual. Florida is a long standing race that comes with the now standard 40 Kona slots for an age group only field. It’s a relatively large event, although numbers were down a little at this year’s race. Generally I’d consider Florida a fast course, but the latest results lean towards the slower end for the event.

A brief note: the swim was cancelled in 2014 so I’ve excluded 2014 results from the medians and distributions below to keep a fair comparison.

Distribution of Finisher Splits at Ironman Florida 2016 Compared with 2003-2015

What’s clear is that compared with the amalgamated data from 2003-2015 this year’s race was slower at every stage of the event. Although I can’t say why, each of the 4 distributions has a lot more weight to the right with a far greater proportion of athletes finishing in what can be termed the back of pack. Whether the shift in results is indicative of a shift in the field is hard to say for certain, but the front of the race does seem a little thinner.

DNS and DNF Rates at Ironman Florida
Listed Athletes Swim Finish Swim DNS/DNF Bike Finish Bike DNF Run Finish Run DNF Overall DNS/DNF
2003 2283 1986 13% 1960 1.3% 1912 2.4% 16.3%
2004 2424 2088 13.9% 2097 2033 3.1% 16.1%
2005 2388 2029 15% 2024 0.2% 1935 4.4% 19%
2006 2538 2176 14.3% 2154 1% 2108 2.1% 16.9%
2007 2609 2251 13.7% 2260 2184 3.4% 16.3%
2008 2606 2259 13.3% 2250 0.4% 2184 2.9% 16.2%
2009 2880 2397 16.8% 2383 0.6% 2312 3% 19.7%
2010 2854 2379 16.6% 2366 0.5% 2300 2.8% 19.4%
2011 2921 2439 16.5% 2401 1.6% 2354 2% 19.4%
2012 3061 2565 16.2% 2520 1.8% 2426 3.7% 20.7%
2013 2891 2816 2.6% 2772 1.6% 2700 2.6% 6.6%
2014 2680 2496 2371 5% 11.7%
2015 2980 2408 19.2% 2331 3.2% 2193 5.9% 26.4%
2016 2245 2167 3.5% 2121 2.1% 2004 5.5% 10.7%

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Athlete numbers were down for this year’s race. Perhaps the growing choice of qualifying races has drawn some people away from Florida. Assuming that the athlete list represents those at the venue so DNS numbers will make up a small proportion of the drop out then the DNF rate at Florida may be on the higher side.

Median Splits by Age Group at Ironman Florida 2016
Median Splits by Age Group at Ironman Florida 2003-2015

Age group medians are also clearly slower at this year’s race. Unsurprising when there’s such a clear pattern in the distributions.

Ironman Florida 2016 Predicted Kona Qualifiers by Country
Country Percentage of Slots Percentage of Field
United States 70.0 77.1
Italy 5.0 0.6
Chile 5.0 0.5
New Zealand 2.5 0.1
Belgium 2.5 0.1
Canada 2.5 3.6
Spain 2.5 0.5
Brazil 2.5 0.9
Finland 2.5 0.3
Germany 2.5 0.7

The US appear to take the majority of slots, in line with the numbers at the race. There’s a broad selection of other nationalities also finishing within the slot allocation.

Top 10 Nationalities at Ironman Florida
Count Percentage
United States 1732 77.1
Canada 81 3.6
Ecuador 51 2.3
United Kingdom 40 1.8
Mexico 39 1.7
Argentinia 30 1.3
Brazil 21 0.9
Germany 15 0.7
Italy 14 0.6
France 13 0.6

Florida is a relatively diverse North American race with a good proportion of nationalities represented.

Changes in Male Finishing Times by Position at Ironman Florida
Changes in Female Finishing Times by Position at Ironman Florida

First of all you can see how the 2014 times, without a swim, stand out. Putting that year aside, 2016 is towards the slower end of Florida results in many age groups, although not the slowest necessarily. Bearing in mind these charts look at times in the top 100, this may not capture the impact of a slower back of pack.

Ironman Florida 2016 Predicted Kona Qualification Times
  Slots Winner Average Kona Qualifier Final Qualifier
M18-24 1 10:05:59 10:05:59 10:05:59
M25-29 1 9:32:08 9:32:08 9:32:08
M30-34 2 8:48:15 9:03:44 9:19:13
M35-39 3 8:58:22 9:04:17 9:11:52
M40-44 4 8:48:57 9:02:33 9:10:08
M45-49 3 9:46:01 9:53:17 9:59:17
M50-54 3 9:48:57 9:58:03 10:08:21
M55-59 2 10:30:01 10:38:30 10:47:00
M60-64 2 10:55:12 11:04:20 11:13:28
M65-69 1 11:15:35 11:15:35 11:15:35
M70-74 1 12:20:52 12:20:52 12:20:52
M75-79 1 16:03:24 16:03:24 16:03:24
F18-24 1 13:11:34 13:11:34 13:11:34
F25-29 1 10:25:00 10:25:00 10:25:00
F30-34 1 9:58:57 9:58:57 9:58:57
F35-39 2 9:47:49 9:58:17 10:08:46
F40-44 2 10:32:51 10:35:47 10:38:43
F45-49 2 10:17:40 10:34:10 10:50:40
F50-54 2 10:26:40 10:49:31 11:12:23
F55-59 1 11:05:55 11:05:55 11:05:55
F60-64 1 12:29:54 12:29:54 12:29:54
F65-69 1 15:07:13 15:07:13 15:07:13
F70-74 1 15:52:01 15:52:01 15:52:01

Based on the athlete list this is my estimate of the slot allocation and the automatic qualifying times assuming no roll down. Actually numbers may have varied, I’ve not seen an official allocation list yet. You can compare this with other races on my Kona qualification page.

Top Twenty Male Performances and Kona Qualification by Age Group at Ironman Florida 2016
Top Twenty Female Performances and Kona Qualification by Age Group at Ironman Florida 2016

Finally checking the performances of the top twenty in each age group this year we generally see a slower race. That said those at the very front are frequently close to the course averages and with older athletes the performances in the top twenty also tend to fall closer to the averages too.

You can access a spreadsheet of the full results and splits from Ironman Florida 2016 on my Google Drive.

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