The pace of Ironman racing is starting to pick up now. For the next few months most weekends will bring me at least one race to analyse. This time it’s Ironman Lanzarote, one of – if not the – toughest Ironman on the calendar. Lanzarote celebrated it’s twenty-fifth anniversary this year although that didn’t bring any extra Kona slots – a standard 40 were available across the age groups. This year’s race looks to have trended slightly slower than course norms.
Comparing this year’s split distributions with previous races and each discipline trends slightly slower. The differences aren’t big, it’s a small shift at each stage that accumulates into a slower overall result set. Margins are small here and don’t suggest significant differences in difficulty or quality of the field at this year’s race.
|Listed Athletes||Swim Finish||Swim DNS/DNF||Bike Finish||Bike DNF||Run Finish||Run DNF||Overall DNS/DNF|
Bearing in mind the difficulty in separating DNS from DNF in the athlete tracker, meaning swim and overall percentages are a combination of the two, rates were lower than average this year. Bike DNFs in particular were down on previous years with a very small lift in DNFs on the run. While it’s a tough bike course in Lanzarote it’s also a single lap; even if you’re struggling to race it can be quicker to get back to T2 under your own power than pull out on the course.
Comparing median splits across the age groups shows how small and variable the differences in times are. The bike is most consistently slower, but generally by a small percentage of the overall time. Swim and run are less consistent in their pattern, often slower, but a few age groups trended faster this year.
The majority of the field in Lanza were Spanish with a significant number of Brits forming the second largest group. I need to complete development on this table so we can start to see where the Kona slots head.
To confirm that this year’s race didn’t vary much from Lanzarote norms we can track how finish times have changed over a number of years. They’ve largely been consistent, especially in the largest age groups. This year may trend slower than the aggregated data in the charts above, but it was faster than last year’s event.
|Slots||Winner||Average Kona Qualifier||Final Qualifier|
Based on my calculation for slot allocation (as ever actual numbers likely varied dependent on final start numbers) the table above shows the automatic qualifying times at this year’s race. For context you can see data on previous qualifying times for Lanzarote and other Ironman races on my Kona qualification page.
For the top twenty in each age group this year’s race didn’t deviate too far from the average finishing times. It does look like Kona qualifiers, those at the very front of their age group, came in a touch faster than average, but generally the differences aren’t too big. The most notable exception is the F40-44 age group where the top twenty posted some of the fastest finishing times from the last 9 years of racing in Lanzarote.
You can access a spreadsheet of the full results and splits from Ironman Lanzarote 2016 on my Google Drive.