The 2016 Ironman calendar wrapped up in Western Australia over the weekend. Ironman Western Australia, in Busselton, is a mid-sized race with the standard 40 Kona slots on offer. It’s a flat course, but conditions can be windy and hot and at times you can wish for a hill to break up the pace. Finishing times there trend towards the faster end of the Ironman scale.
The distributions for this year’s race fit very closely with those for the aggregation of previous results. There have been course changes mixed into the last decade of racing in Busselton, but the broad pattern of results hasn’t changed that much. 2016 doesn’t appear to be an exception.
|Listed Athletes||Swim Finish||Swim DNS/DNF||Bike Finish||Bike DNF||Run Finish||Run DNF||Overall DNS/DNF|
The swim DNF numbers at this year’s race were particularly low, but bike DNF was slightly higher. In the end, with a lower run DNF rate too, this race appears to have had a particularly low overall number of DNFs.
A lot of the male age group medians appear improved in this years race compared with the aggregated data. Although this is not the case for the youngest age groupers. The women’s results are more varied in comparison, with some faster age group medians and some slower. It’s worth also noting both male and female pro medians were faster at this year’s event.
Western Australia is a long way away for many of us, but it does a good job of pulling in athletes from around the globe. 30% of the field come from outside Australia.
How this year’s results compare with previous years depends a lot on the age group and finishing position you consider. There’s an uptick for some age groups and down turns for others. Variations tend to be small though and would suggest that this years race is not dissimilar to any of the last four or five.
|Slots||Winner||Average Kona Qualifier||Final Qualifier|
The above table uses my calculation for slot allocation based on the athlete tracker numbers, from there it calculates qualifying times assuming no roll down. Final start numbers may have varied and the qualifying time with that. You can compare this with other races on my Kona qualification page.
|Country||Percentage of Slots||Percentage of Field|
Taking those automatic qualifying times I’ve then determine the nationalities of qualifiers to see where the Koan slots went. As is normally the case the majority went to the home nation, the remainder were picked up by US and European athletes.
One thing that’s clear is while the medians look the same as usual, the top twenty in most male age groups were well ahead of the averages. Times are up there with the fastest races in Western Australia. This is also the case for a few of the female age groups, those between 35 and 50. Outside of that results are closer to the averages or slower.
Overall it looks like conditions were quite fair and enabled some fast times at the front of the race. This was balanced out across the field though which kept the medians in line with previous results. I’d put 2016 as a faster than average race in Busselton.
You can access a spreadsheet of the full results and splits from Ironman Western Australia 2016 on my Google Drive.