Matt Trautman led the South African contingent at the inaugural CHALLENGECAPETOWN triathlon event, but it was only enough for third spot on Sunday.
Honours when to Spaniard Pablo Dapena who sprinted to the finish in a time of 3hr 46min 48sec, to finish some 90 seconds ahead of Steven McKenna (Australia), with Trautman next best.
First out of the water after a strong swim, Dapena formed part of a six-man bunch that dominated most of the 90km cycle from Big Bay into the Company’s Garden. But it was on the run where he showed his strength, and he quickly set the pace in front, together with McKenna, with Trautman following close behind.
Dapena was ecstatic about his victory. ‘The conditions were amazing. I had a great swim and enjoyed the flat and fast bike. The run was a little windy at times and that hill was a challenge, but I loved racing in Cape Town, and I hope to be back next year!’
The women’s race belonged to Emma Pallant (UK), who took a convincing win in 4:14:51 – seven minutes faster than South Africa’s Annah Watkinson, and almost 10 minutes ahead of British pro Laura Siddall.
‘I loved the swim and the run was tough,’ said Pallant. ‘The flat and fast bike made for an awesome day, and I had great fun on the course.’
This was a historic day for the race organisers, who successfully staged the first middle distance triathlon in the City of Cape Town. The 1.9km swim, 90km cycle and 21km run showcased the Mother City.
‘We couldn’t memorable asked for better conditions to stage this inaugural event,’ said race director Gary Marescia. ‘The nature of the course made it possible for pros and age groupers to put themselves to the test. A middle distance triathlon in the City of Cape Town has been a long time coming, and I am thrilled that we could show local and international triathletes that the Mother City is ready for an event of this calibre.’