The biggest Ironman distance event of the last weekend was Challenge Roth. Roth is a fast course with a long history and superb support. That’s enough to earn it some analysis in the absence of Kona slots. Times are fast in Roth and this year was no exception.
Comparing this years result distribution with that of the last 9 years shows it to largely typical for the course. The bike and the run both trend very slightly faster than usual and that does give a marginally faster overall distribution, but this is not particularly significant.
My data hasn’t always given a clear picture of DNFs rates (only including finishing athletes), such rows are marked in red. Where numbers are clearer, in blue, we can see this year saw a drop in the DNF rate in bike and run. So, slightly faster times and lower DNF rates there suggest good conditions on the course.
Generally the pattern in the age group median splits above matches that of the distribution with slightly faster bike and run. The differences are small, particularly on the bike.
Since 2014 times for specific age group places have been quite consistent in Roth. A little annual fluctuation, but no major shift. This year is no exception. Smaller age groups, like most of the women’s field, show a bit more annual variation in times. The largest are much more consistent in results.
Top twenty age group times this year trended slightly ahead of the average. As with other differences this is mostly a small shift and often at the front of the age groups the times are average or slower. A few older male age groups have more significantly improved performances in their top twenties. Broadly though, the 2019 race was a little bit faster than usual.