At some point today in Louisville and Whistler the remaining age group slots for the 2013 Ironman World Championships will be offered out. There are 150 slots available at the two races and as I’ve seen more searches for it I’m going to start my results analysis with Ironman Louisville. By my previous assessment Louisville is typical of North American Ironman racing and this year is no exception.
The distribution of splits at Ironman Louisville 2013 compare well with the results of previous years of racing – there are differences, but generally they’re small. The swim appears to have been marginally faster this year while both bike and run are subtly weighted slower lacking density in the middle of the field, but with more finishers towards the tail. The net result is a small shift of overall finish times towards the slower end of the spectrum. Times at the front of the field appear largely comparable, but further back athletes were a little slower than usual.
The median splits by division largely support this view. The variation in swim times shows a definite, but small trend to faster times; bike and run times are broadly comparable and the pattern is less clear although it seems that in the women’s divisions the run is more often slower. Differences aren’t particularly significant so while the overall picture of the 2013 race is of a slower event it is only by a small margin.
At the front of the age group race the picture is slightly different – overall Ironman Louisville may have been slightly slower, but for Kona competitors times were generally fast. As can be seen in the charts above age groups, both male and female, were often won in times distinctly faster than average. In a number of cases results are faster than previously seen. Those hunting the final Kona slots would need to perform better than the averages with 9:45 or faster being the goal for the major male age groups.
A divided field this year with results spread further than usual. The fastest age groupers put in performances equal to or better than past races, but further back in the pack the field was a little slower than usual. Small changes, by and large Ironman Louisville largely performed as expected.
You can view a spreadsheet of the full results and splits from Ironman Louisville 2013 on my Google Drive.