Crowds help Daniela Ryf romp to fourth Ironman title

Runner-up Charles also acknowledges 'magical' support along Ironman route

Swiss triathlete Daniela Ryf clinched her fourth Ironman 70.3 title when she crossed the finish line in  four hours, one minute and one second at the Isuzu Ironman 70.3 World Championships at Hobie Beach on Saturday.

This year's African Championship winner Lucy Charles of Great Britain took second place in a time of 4.04.58 while,  Germany’s Anne Haug  finished third in 4.07.21.

Jeanni Seymour was the only South African in the top 10 after finishing in seventh place with a time of 4.14.56.

The win was Ryf’s fourth 70.3 World Championship title to add to her three full distance crowns. The 31-year-old  said it was a tough day at the office and that she was happy with her performance.

“Lucy Charles really did a good job and Anna Haug. They made the race really tough today, especially Lucy she was just not letting go. She is a tough girl I have a lot of respect for her she has a great future and she is getting better and better. I'd better watch out for her,” Ryf said.

“When I jumped off he bike I was absolutely smashed. It was just such a tough race because I think it was really hard on the legs.

“I knew I had to do great in the run because the  pressure was on. I was happy that I could find my legs I felt really good too.

“It was a challenging day  but I am super happy to win here in South Africa. It was great race and great atmosphere.”

Ryf said the support from the crowd was amazing.

“The crowd, especially on the run, was great. They  cheered so much I felt like flying over the course. They made it go by much quicker.

“It was a very hard day but fantastic.”

Runner up  Charles said her second was a great motivation boost ahead of the Ironman World Championships in Kona, in October.

“Maybe I will have a couple of days rest and then go back to work for the big one,” Charles said.

Speaking about her performance today the 24-year-old said; “It was a pretty good day.

“I wanted to tough it out from the word go and that is how I like to race from the front. I was pretty happy to have managed to stay with Daniela when she caught me on the bike I thought it was going to come down to a foot race.

“I felt pretty good on the run today. I am really happy all round.

“My number is 43 because my ranking was not pretty good so I wanted to improve on that. So to come second, I am really happy,” she said.

“The crowd felt like a home crowd today. Everybody was cheering me on it was magical again and I think it was because I won here in April that the crowd was giving me all the love today.”

Top 10 women results:

1 Daniela RYF 04:01:12 Switzerland

2 Lucy CHARLES  04:04:58 +03:46 United Kingdom

3 Anne HAUG  04:07:21 +06:08 Germany

4 Pamella OLIVEIRA  04:13:43 +12:31 Brazil

5 Radka VODICKOVA  04:13:49 +12:36 Czech Republic

6 Imogen SIMMONDS 04:14:39 +13:26 Switzerland

7 Jeanni SEYMOUR 04:14:56 +13:43 South Africa

8 Ellie SALTHOUSE  04:15:11 +13:58 Australia

9 Emma PALLANT 04:15:52 +14:39 United Kingdom

10 Sarah TRUE  04:15:59 +14:46 United States