Clement Mignon claimed a convincing home win at IRONMAN France Nice on Sunday as he stormed through on the run for a dominant success.
The 24-year-old was way too strong for his rivals in a dress rehearsal for the IRONMAN World Championship on the same course in September.
Mignon hauled in Kristian Hogenhaug and Cameron Wurf on the run before surging clear for an emphatic victory.
Swim – French lead as Wurf tucks in
The top 10 were separated by just 13 seconds as they exited the waters of the Cote d’Azur early on Sunday – and it was a French 1-2-3 after the swim. Dylan Magnien led the way ahead of Simon Viain and Mignon.
Denmark’s Hogenhaug was in close attendance in fourth while there was plenty of interest in Aussie Wurf – also part of that lead group in eighth.
It was Hogenhaug who led out onto the bike course after an excellent first transition, while France’s William Mennesson was also swift through T1 as he moved from 10th to second.
Bike – Wurf builds gap, but not enough
The race up front started to take on a familiar look as uber biker Wurf moved to the front of the field at the 27km mark – just ahead of Mignon and Hogenhaug. That trio had started to separate from the rest of the field – which was headed by Mennesson.
Wurf gradually turned the screw over the first half of the bike leg, building a lead of 44 seconds to Hogenhaug, who had now passed Mignon into second place. The Frenchman was a further 10 seconds back.
As the field moved towards the final third of the bike leg, Mignon was starting to find the pace very hot as he dropped two minutes off the pace. Hogenhaug though was still very much in contention as he closed to within 30 seconds of Wurf. By the time the pair reached the 150km mark the gap had totally evaporated.
The final stages of the bike saw Wurf turn on the gas once again to build an advantage of 27 seconds over Hogenhaug heading into T2. Mignon meanwhile was 2:42 off the pace in third. The Frenchman would make light work of reducing the gap on the run.
Run – Mignon comes on strong
Wurf’s advantage had been reduced to just 9 seconds as he and Hogenhaug exited T2 out onto the run, and the Dane caught and passed the Australian in the early stages of the marathon. Both though will surely have been fearing the challenge of Mignon behind.
The French star began to chop away at the deficit – by 5km it was under two minutes, by 10km it was down to a solitary minute and by 20k Mignon had completely turned things around. He had passed both Hogenhaug and Wurf and now led by 43 seconds.
Mignon continued to pour it on over the second half of the marathon, surging clear as Belgium’s Bart Aernouts came through the field to pass Wurf and move into second.
At the line Mignon had more than six minutes to spare over Aernouts, while Germany’s Jonas Hoffman passed Wurf in the closing stages to grab the final podium spot.
IRONMAN France 2023 Results
Sunday 25 June 2023 – 3.8km / 180km / 42.2km
(Pro Men only race)
- 1. Clement Mignon (FRA) – 8:17:40
- 2. Bart Aernouts (BEL) – 8:24:12
- 3. Jonas Hoffman (GER) – 8:27:25
- 4. Cameron Wurf (AUS) – 8:29:42
- 5. Dylan Magnien (FRA) – 8:34:11