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The moment Magnus Ditlev knew he could beat his own world record at Challenge Roth

The great Dane had to pull out all the stops on the marathon to beat his own full-distance world record time.

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Magnus Ditlev revealed it wasn’t until the halfway point of the marathon that he realised another world record full-distance time was on the cards at Challenge Roth.

The great Dane always looked in control of the men’s race as he powered to a third successive victory.

But less clear-cut was whether he would beat his time of 7:24:40 from last year, the best ever if we don’t include Kristian Blummenfelt’s 7:21:11 at IRONMAN Cozumel in 2021 when there was a down-current swim.

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How Magnus’ record race panned out

Wet conditions this year meant Ditlev’s bike time was a couple of minutes less fast than 2023, though he still dipped just under the four-hour mark for that.

But he set out quickly on the marathon and started to stretch out what was already a significant lead.

His half marathon split was 1:16:16 and it was at that point the record started to come into focus – he needed a second half of 1:19 or better.

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Race against the clock

Speaking at the finish line he explained: “I had a really good swim [he was just 51 seconds off the lead]. So that set me up for the first part of the race.

Magnus Ditlev joy Challenge Roth 2024 [Photo credit: Simon Fischer | Challenge Roth]
Magnus Ditlev celebrates his win [Photo credit: Simon Fischer | Challenge Roth]

“And then on the bike, I actually had really good power, far better than last year.

“But I think the rain made the course a little bit slow on the bike.

“And I felt really good on the run. Of course I know the course a bit by now! That was certainly an advantage. But the spectators were once again phenomenal and spurred me on to this performance.

“I had asked my coach around the half marathon mark and then he said I was two minutes faster.

“So from there on, I was really wanting to beat the record.”

And a 2:34 marathon, more than eight minutes quicker than his rivals and nearly three minutes better than he clocked last year, proved the difference as he went under the record by just under a minute.

Jonathan Turner
Written by
Jonathan Turner
Jonathan Turner is News Director for both TRI247 and RUN247, and is accustomed to big-name interviews, breaking news stories and providing unrivalled coverage for endurance sports.  
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