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IRONMAN 70.3 Zell am See: Wins for Funk and Bleymehl plus encouraging return for Astle

It was German domination in Austria on Sunday.

News Director
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German duo Frederic Funk and Jan Stratmann both backed up their IRONMAN 70.3 World Championship podiums by finishing one-two at IRONMAN 70.3 Zell am See in Austria on Sunday.

And in the women’s race their compatriot Daniela Bleymehl roared back to form with a first victory of the season while Britain’s Ruth Astle made an encouraging return from injury in fifth place.

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Pro Men – Funk powers clear on bike

Funk and Stratmann had chased home fellow German Rico Bogen in Finland seven days earlier but they didn’t seem to be too impacted by those exertions.

It was on the bike where defending champion Funk effectively settled it just as he had 12 months previously, his time of 2:04:27 being four minutes and upwards better than the rest.

And he never appeared like relinquishing that advantage on the run, looking strong throughout and sprinting over the line to just dip under the 3:50 mark.

Stratmann, who took this title in 2021, was second just under five minutes back, with Stenn Goetstouwers on Belgium rounding out the podium.

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Pro Women – Bleymehl back in style

After two IRONMAN victories last season (South Africa and Frankfurt), 2023 has been a comparative struggle for Bleymehl.

But she too moved to the head of affairs on the bike and had more than enough in hand to hold off Daniela Kleiser, who produced the fastest run of the day to take second. Franzi Reng made it a German clean sweep of the podium in third.

Afterwards, Belymehl said on Instagram: Super happy to take the win. But much more important: I finally felt like myself again and was able to show a good performance. Thanks to my team: this one was for you!”

There was good news too for Astle, for whom this was a tentative comeback after serious calf problems.

Talking through her race, she wrote: “Little bit of swim, bike, run action again finally!

“Relatively happy with the swim – was in the group I wanted to be with but had to work for it

“Bike – good first 40km then the legs fell off!

“Run – stuck to the plan, longest run in six months and felt relatively comfortable, and biggest thing is the calves survived!

“Time to get stuck into a good block pre Kona now!”

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IRONMAN 70.3 Zell am See Kaprun 2023 results

Sunday 3 September 2023 – 1.9km / 90km / 21.1km

PRO Men

  • 1. Frederic Funk (GER) – 3:49:56
  • 2. Jan Stratmann (GER) – 3:54:46
  • 3. Stenn Goetstouwers (BEL) – 3:55:19
  • 4. Andreas Dreitz (GER) – 3:56:32
  • 5. Arne Leiss (GER) – 3:56:51

PRO Women

  • 1. Daniela Bleymehl (GER) – 4:19:18
  • 2. Daniela Klesier (GER) – 4:21:52
  • 3. Franzi Reng (GER) – 4:26:50
  • 4. Lisa-Maria Dornauer (AUT) – 4:28:15
  • 5. Ruth Astle (GBR) – 4:31:09
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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