Els Visser closes magical three weeks with impressive Challenge Taiwan victory

Very briefly Els Visser doubted whether she should race as many times in three weeks, but fortunately for everyone, she ‘just did’. Although: perhaps it was less pleasant for her competitors, because after already a sensational third place at the PTO T100 in Singapore two weeks ago and a victory at Ironman 70.3 Lapu-Lapu last week, Visser has just credited another victory by winning Challenge Taiwan by force.

Visser concludes the best three weeks of her career as a professional athlete with the victory of Challenge Taiwan, one of the largest races in the world with more than eight thousand participants. After the swim, Visser had a little less catching up to do than usual; Switzerland’s Alanis Siffert came first toward her bike after 25:22 minutes, but then a group including Visser followed, trailing by 3:15 minutes. At that point, Visser was surrounded by Lucas Lottie, Nina Derron and Samantha Kingsford, among others.

This would not last long, because already in the first kilometers on the bike Visser rode away from all her competitors – and she did pretty fast – and after twenty kilometers she had already turned her deficit of more than three minutes on Siffert into a lead of more than one minute. Visser was clearly on a mission and didn’t waste any time.

On the bike, Visser kept pushing and her lead quickly grew bigger and bigger. Halfway through she was already almost three minutes ahead and once back in T2 her lead over the number two at the time, Lottie, was more than four minutes. Siffert, third at the time, followed at seven minutes.

During the run, Visser ‘just’ had to finish it. Obviously a more difficult task in practice than on paper, but Visser didn’t crack anywhere and only saw her lead grow in the first few kilometers. Only in the very last kilometers did Siffert, who had advanced to second place, come a little closer, but it was far from exciting for victory.

Visser won the race in 4:08:39. Siffert was second in 4:14:20 and Lottie was third in 4:18:48.

The men’s race was won by Jack Moody (3:49:16). Filipe Azevedo (3:50:10) finished second and Joel Wooldridge (3:57:52) finished third.

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