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Former Olympic rower breaks all-time Age-Group record for an Ironman triathlon

Lars Wichert won the IRONMAN European Championship title in Hamburg with a record breaking performance.

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German Lars Wichert made history on Sunday, as the 37-year-old smashed the amateur Ironman record with a phenomenal time of 7:50:42 at IRONMAN Hamburg.

Wichert, who is a two-time Olympian, having represented Team Germany as a rower, is a father of three and also works part-time as an editor.

As well as being a three-time rowing world champion, Wichert is also a runner-up at the IRONMAN 70.3 age-group world championship and took the European title for the full distance in Hamburg.

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Dan Plews sees record fall

The previous record of 7:56:56 was set by Dr Dan Plews, coach of former IRONMAN World Champion Chelsea Sodaro, last year at IRONMAN California.

Dr Dan Plews wins IRONMAN California in new age-group record
Former record holder Dan Plews at IRONMAN California [Photo Credit – Donald Miralle/IRONMAN]

Plews, who also works with the likes of two-time IRONMAN 70.3 World Champion Javier Gomez, won by more than twenty minutes when he broke the record last October.

For Wichert, the battle for the win was a much closer affair, with Australian Chris Beckmans also taking down the marker set by Plews, finishing second in a time of 7:55:55.

China’s Miao Hao, who finished in third, clocked a lightning quick 7:58:04, as three men remarkably finished under the eight hour mark in Hamburg.

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How did Wichert do it?

Splitting 57:48 for the 3800m swim, Wichert was only the 22nd athlete in his age-group out of the water, and was 86th overall, as he headed out on to the bike. By comparison, Plews split 36:27 during his record breaking race.

Lars Wichert breaks the all-time Ironman record for an amateur athlete in Hamburg.
[Photo Credit – Frank Wechsel]

Out on to the bike, Wichert really started to make his mark, clocking the fastest time of the day with a phenomenal 4:03:55 split for the 180km course, which saw him average a remarkable 43.67kmph.

On to the run, Wichert recorded the second fastest marathon amongst the age-group ranks by a handful of seconds, running 2:41:48 to take the title and all-time record.

Winning by just over five minutes, the German credited Australian Beckmans for pushing him all the way, and said “It’s still incredible for me and I never in my wildest dreams thought I’d have anything like this left in my old body.”

Tomos Land
Written by
Tomos Land
Tomos Land is a triathlon & running journalist whose expertise lies in the professional world of short course & long distance triathlon, though he also boasts an extensive knowledge of ultra-running.
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