Kristian Hogenhaug is the new World Triathlon Long Distance World Champion. The Danish athlete put together an excellent all-round performance in Almere to break the tape in a mind-blowing time of 7:37:46. BMC Team mate Pablo Dapena Gonzales had a fantastic race as well and took 6th place. Jesper Svensson (SWE; 7:39:25) finished 2nd, with Reinaldo Colucci (BRA; 7:45:15) rounding out the podium.
Astonishing bike split
At the World Triathlon Long Distance World Championship the BMC Pro Triathlon Team p/b 2XU was represented by Kristian Hogenhaug (Denmark) and Pablo Dapena Gonzalez (Spain). Kristian towed the line in Almere only 4 weeks after his incredible 2nd place in IM Frankfurt. For Pablo it was only his 3rd full distance race of his career.
The swim went very well for both athletes. Dapena reached T1 well inside the big group and trailed the lead by only 15 seconds. Hogenhaug exited the water 2’ later. That allowed Kristian to charge to the front of the race early on the bike. Before the 50k mark, the Dane had caught up with the leaders and took over control of the race immediately. Only Svensson was able to match the pace of Kristian. The duo worked hard together in the front of the race and kept extending their lead. After a very fast 180k (2nd fastest bike split for Hogenhaug with 4:03:15) Kristian started the marathon, shoulder-to-shoulder with Svensson. They took off with an advantage of 7’40 over 3rd place. Pablo Depena kept his own on the bike and reached T2 in 10th place.
World class performance
The run started similar to the bike. Both Hogenhaug and Svensson worked together and didn’t lose each other out of side. A few times, Kristian upped the pace, but every time Svensson responded and tagged along. With 12k to go, Hogenhaug made another attack and this time made it stick. He was able to open up a small gap and kept extending that advantage bit by bit. The BMC athlete started the final lap of 7k with a lead of 47 seconds. In that final lap around the lake, he kept his pace high towards the finish line. With an incredible all-round performance Kristian Hogenhaug took an incredible victory to crown himself Long Distance World Champion. After racing in front of the race from the 50k mark on the bike, Kristian posted a mind-blowing 7:37:46 finish time. Both a new course record in Almere and Danish record.
His BMC teammate Pablo Dapena Gonzales didn’t fade in the run either. He was able to move up to 6th place to come home in 7:55:54. A fantastic sub-8h finish in his first full distance triathlon of the season.
After the race Kristian Hogenhaug still couldn’t believe what he just had achieved.
“It is just unbelievable what happened today. It was my 4th full distance race of the season (since IM Tulsa in May), but I know I get better by competing a lot. So, I went into this race with confidence.
In the swim, I didn’t have a great feeling. My arms were feeling heavy and I felt I didn’t have a good pace. That’s why I was surprised I was only 2’ behind the leaders coming out of the water.
The first hour on the bike, I really pushed hard to catch the front of the race. I intentionally put in a lot of effort to chase down the leaders and bridge the gap as fast as possible. Once I achieved that goal, I made sure to ease the pace, eat and drink enough. From that point onwards, I worked together with Svensson to open up the biggest advantage possible towards T2.
On the run, we didn’t start on a suicide pace trying to drop each other, but we ran shoulder-to-shoulder for a long time. After 2 laps I really started to get into my rhythm. I was able to keep my pace high and drop Svensson. I managed to stay in that rhythm and didn’t have to drop the pace towards the finish line. For sure, I’m going to take some rest now and enjoy this victory.”