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The 14th edition of the second oldest Ironman in North America will be contested this coming Sunday in the Village of Lake Placid, New York.
Sunday’s IRONMAN event will crown new champions.. That’s because neither of last year’s winners (American TJ Tollakson and Canadian Heather Wurtele) are back to defend their titles.
American Andy Potts, Australian Pete Jacobs6 and Frenchman Romain Guillaume are the key players vying for the overall win,, and all excel in each leg of the race.
Potts, one of the fastest swimmers in the sport, should lead the field out ofMirrorLaketo start the day. The 2010 Ironman Cozumel Champion will try to hold onto the lead position for as long as he can. And he’s a solid runner so the other top contenders will look to pass Potts on the bike or keep him within their sights.
Guillaume also likes to race from the front and performs well on tough bike courses. (He holds the bike course record at Ironman Wisconsn.) He will look to chase down Potts and push the pace on the ride to take as much of a lead as he can onto the run and hold on for the win. Guillaume is fresh off a victory at Ironman 70.3 Mont Tremblant and is still looking for his first career Ironman victory. It could be that Guillaume and Potts pull away from the rest of the field, particularly Jacobs.
Jacobs, second at the Ironman World Championship last year is an excellent runner. the tough run course often takes it’s toll on those who have pushed too hard, leaving the stronger runners an opportunity to pull through in the final leg of the race.
Others to watch – Matthew Russell USA / Jared Milam USA
There are no clear favorites in the women’s race, so the stage is set for someone to have their “coming out party” by claiming their first Ironman victory.
Five of last year’s top ten have returned to seize that elusive Ironman title. American Jacqui Gordon (fifth), Canadian Suzanne Zelazo (sixth in her Ironman debut), American Amber Ferreira (seventh), Canadian Marie Danais (ninth), and American Suzanne Serpico (tenth overall as an age grouper – she is racing as a professional this year).
Over 2,800 registered athletes will vie for 50 qualifying Age Group slots to the 2012 IRONMAN World Championship, while the professionals will battle it out for a $25,000 prize purse and valuable ranking points towards qualifying for the Saturday October 13th IRONMAN World Championships in Hawaii.