Jeanni Seymour and Tim Don added to their successes this season, running their way to decisive wins at IRONMAN 70.3 Boulder. While Seymour is South African and Don is from the UK, they both reside and train in Boulder and for both, it was their first time winning the event.
While Seymour had a decent swim in the chase pack of five, 1:13 from race leader Alicia Kaye, she explained “I made a small tactical error early in the swim and I missed out on a big goal of mine which was to swim on the feet of speedy swimmer Alicia Kaye. I ended up swimming comfortably in the chase group with Leanda Cave and Katy Evens.”
Having put much focus on the bike since her second place at the IRONMAN 70.3 North American Championships, Seymour put in a great ride limiting her loss to the strong riding of Kaye to only 14 seconds, starting the run 1:24 back in second. “I rode solo for the majority of the bike ride and had one of my career best rides, matching the pace of Alicia and having the third fastest bike split of the day.”
Once again demonstrating her strength on the run, Seymour took back nearly a minute from Kaye by mile 3, finding the front of the race by mile 4 and continued to open the gap on Kaye all the way to the finish.
With 3:09 to spare on the hard charging Lesley Smith and 5:13 in front of Kaye who ended up finishing 3rd, Seymour was thrilled to add IRONMAN 70.3 Champion to her list of accomplishments for the first time. “This win felt really great. I am originally from Johannesburg, South Africa but Boulder is my adopted home and a city that I hold very close to my heart. I started coming here in 2012 as a kid with a road bike and a dream of being a “pro triathlete.” I honestly did not know what I was getting myself into. I raced 70.3 Boulder that first year and was nearly dead last of the professional females. It was a tough reality check but it did not deter my spirits, I continued to work hard and compete in this race in the coming years. I slowly moved up the ranks, finishing 6th in 2015 and 2nd in 2016. Yesterday’s win is a special victory that I will enjoy and savor.”
Seymour has been enjoying another stellar season backing up last year’s results landing on the podium in her last 11 races and winning six of those. Along with consistent podium results, she said “The more success you have, the more pressure there is to perform. But for me, it is all about enjoying the process.”
“I train really hard, invest 100% into the sport and lay all of my cards on the table come race day. And that is my best approach to racing well. I am really enjoying it at the moment.”
Although IRONMAN 70.3 Boulder was close to her heart and important to her to perform well in she said “My main focus is the 70.3 World Championship in Chattanooga. I will settle back into a big training block right here in Boulder, on the same roads we raced on yesterday, in preparation for my real test of the season at the World Championships in September”
After the 56-mile bike, Don was in 4th position, 2 seconds behind Franklin, 2:26 back of Montgomery with 2:28 to make up on the bike leader Chrabot. Although Don put in some crushing bike performance in races earlier this season he explained, “For me, on the bike, I did not feel great but I set about limiting the time to the leaders, I know the course well here and going too hard can make you pay for it on the run.”
The tables began to turn and Don ran his way to the front end of the race 6 miles in. “Once on the run I found my rhythm and just tried to run smoothly. I caught Matt and could relax a bit but still kept the pressure on.”
Pulling off the fastest run split of the day, 2:34 faster than Ben Hoffman, Don finished the day in a winning time of 3:41:32. Chrabot’s finished 2nd, 2:19 off Don’s pace with Hoffman finishing 2:45 back in 3rd.
Similar to Seymour, this was Don’s first time winning the IRONMAN 70.3 Boulder event. After finishing 2nd twice before Don said “Third time lucky!!! I was 2nd in 2014 and 2015 – It was so good to have my family and friends to watch cheer and give me splits. Good times!!!!
IRONMAN 70.3 Boulder
1 Jeanni Seymour 4:07:56
2 Lesley Smith 4:11:05
3 Alicia Kaye 4:13:09
4 Katy Evans 4:21:32
5 Leanda Cave 4:22:28
1 Tim Don 3:41:32
2 Matt Chrabot 3:43:51
3 Ben Hoffman 3:44:17
4 Justin Metzler 3:45:17
5 Jake Montgomery 3:46:31