Former IRONMAN 70.3 World Championship runner-up Ben Kanute has laid out his intentions for the upcoming race season, with the American not shying away from making some bold predictions.
Contracted to race the new T100 Triathlon World Tour, the 31-year-old revealed his racing plans for the year, with everything leading to the IRONMAN World Championship in Kona.
In his quest to become the IRONMAN World Champion, Kanute said that he is preparing to produce a sub-7:30 performance, which would obliterate the current course record of 7:40:24 set by Gustav Iden in 2022.
Utilising the T100 to prepare for Kona
Unveiling his plans for this season, Kanute revealed the five races he would be competing in at the T100 Tour and hinted at also potentially competing in some of the IRONMAN Pro Series races.
“I’m going to be doing the PTO series, which is now the T100 Series, and use that as a platform and springboard to have the best possible race in Kona.
“I will be starting my season in Miami on March 9th, on the race track that I’ve raced on before, for the first T100 race and I’m just super excited.
“The next race after that will be Singapore, which will also be big from a heat standpoint and going back to a course that I know and that I’m familiar with.
“Then in June, there is the California race, which I am definitely going to do with it being in the US and pretty much Arizona and California are not too far apart.
“Inbetween, I’m playing with the idea of Ironman 70.3 St George, just because it’s within driving distance, it’s the North American Championship and I don’t have my Ironman 70.3 Worlds slot yet.”
New Zealand no-go for World Champs
Despite possibly planning to race either IRONMAN 70.3 St George or IRONMAN 70.3 Mont-Tremblant, Kanute said he’s unsure if he will aim to race at the IRONMAN 70.3 World Championship in Taupo this year.
“After Kona, it will be Dubai and the Grand Final in the T100 series to wrap up the races I need for the series, where your best four races count and that will crown the new world champion for the T100 Tour.
“Because of those two races after Kona, I’m finding it hard to figure out how to race in New Zealand on December 2nd and be at my best, especially against guys like Hayden Wilde and Marten Van Riel.
“You have to be in top run form for that race and my whole focus this year is going to be on the swim and the bike. […]. I’m probably not to race the IRONMAN 70.3 World Championship this year.”
Kona is king
Having set out his intentions for Kona almost 18 months ago after finishing on the podium at IRONMAN Arizona, Kanute has carefully laid out his plans leading up to the crown jewel of long course triathlon, with the first half of the season being used to set a benchmark for his fitness.
“I have a bit of time [from T100 California] before the T100 London event in late July, then after that it’s all eyes on Kona, between training camps and training focus.
” I’m really going to try and win the world championship on the Big Island and go all in on that. I’m going to take the first half of the year to see how I do in those T100 races.”
Reiterating his plans to be as prepared as possible for the race in Hawaii, Kanute said that he truly believes this year will be a record setting one, with a special performance required to win the race.
“I think it’s going to be a record setting year in Kona, not just under 7:40 but I think it could be under 7:30 and that’s what I’m training for.
“I think this whole year is going to be a record setting year, especially in Kona. I’m honestly planning on a sub-7:30 IRONMAN on the Big Island, conditions dependent to win the IRONMAN World Championship.”