TRI247
Search
shop

‘Broken and brutal’ – Big Blu reflects on third at Kona 2022

He didn't retain the IMWC title he won in St George, but Kristian Blummenfelt gave everything he had in Hawaii

Chief Correspondent
Last updated -
SHOP

Such is the level in modern triathlon that what would have been a run course record (2:39:21) and a course record (7:43:23) ‘only’ earned World Triathlon, Olympic and 2021 IRONMAN World Champion, Kristian Blummenfelt, third place on Saturday as the IRONMAN World Championship returned to Kona, Hawaii.

That’s what happens of course when you measure against those records pre-race, as by the time Blummenfelt returned to Ali’i Drive, Gustav Iden had run even faster to set new standards.

Sam Laidlow couldn’t be caught either, as he destroyed the bike course en-route to second.

Advertisement

Gustav was flying

For one (brief) moment it looked as though it would be Kristian setting off in pursuit of the long-time leader, but Big Blu explained that he knew he was under pressure.

“That was a brutal run. I knew Gustav would be fast on the run, and he was just flying. I tried to do whatever I could by being tactical, not taking any pulls there on the run and just hope that I had something left. Coming out of the Energy Lab I got a little gap through an aid station, but I guess he just let me believe that I had a chance. I gave it a go, but I guess he was just playing me up there and boom, he went.”

gustav-iden-kristian-blummenfelt-kona-2022-run-2
(Photo by Tom Pennington/Getty Images for IRONMAN)

“We were pushing hard and Magnus was surging once in a while. We went up to Hawi quite hard but I felt alright when I started running, it’s just that the pace was a few seconds too fast for me. I just tried to hand on.”

Praise for Laidlow

The Norwegian duo have earned the right to the confidence that they typically display. Their results prove that. You can’t win them all however, and the Olympic champion was very impressed with the 23-year-old Frenchman, Laidlow:

“I thought we would be able to catch Sam, but he was just running so well and extremely well done to him for getting into second.”

“We sort of let Sam go (Ed. on the bike] because I thought it would be a battle between me and Gustav. I was very surprised when we got feedback that he was five minutes up front, so that he was really smashing it hard on the bike there back on the Queen K and really running well. I thought that we would catch him but he was running so well, especially the last half, the same as Gustav and so one and three for the team isn’t too bad. I’m happy to make it on the podium, but that was tough.

“40 minutes post-race and still broken. It’s a tough one, and I guess tomorrow is going to be tough too.”

sam-laidlow-kristian-blummenfelt-kona-2022-run-finish
(Photo by Tom Pennington/Getty Images for IRONMAN)
John Levison
Written by
John Levison
TRI247's Chief Correspondent, John has been involved in triathlon for well over 30 years, 15 of those writing on these pages, whilst he can also be found commentating for events across the UK.
Discover more
Beginner Triathlete Race Day Checklist
Triathlon Race Day Checklist – A Beginners Guide
Challenge Kaiserwinkl-Walchsee 2023 - Photo Credit José Luis Hourcade / Challenge Walchsee 2023
How to pace a hilly half distance triathlon – Challenge Kaiserwinkl-Walchsee race day tips
sumarpo triathlon swimming wetsuit
Wetsuit buying guide – How to choose the best wetsuit for triathlon, open water swimming, SwimRun and cold water
Challenge Family Roth
Five things you need to know about the Challenge Roth bike course
Riixo Recovery compression calf sleeves sports recovery
How to relieve sore muscles and recover faster between training sessions
latest News
Rio 2026 Olympic Games triathlon female podium - Gwen Jorgensen, Nicola Spirig, Vicky Holland
Olympic Games Triathlon: Gwen Jorgensen breaks down what went wrong after missing out on USA team for Paris 2024
Taylor Spivey / Sophie Coldwell Super League Triathlon Munich 2022
Taylor Spivey’s touching message to Sophie Coldwell after Olympics heartbreak – ‘I know how this feels Soph’
An emotional Sophie Coldwell wins WTCS Yokohama 2023 photo credit: World Triathlon / Tommy Zaferes
British Triathlon explain ‘difficult decision’ after Sophie Coldwell Olympic Games triathlon omission
Sophie Coldwell WTCS Cagliari 2024
Sophie Coldwell heartbroken and “angry” after missing out on Olympic Games triathlon spot at Paris 2024
Jonathan Brownlee / Jonny Brownlee - World Triathlon Cup Arzachena 2022
Olympic Games Triathlon: Jonny Brownlee reacts after missing out on Paris 2024 spot for Team GB
triathlon on your terms
Never miss out with our triathlon alerts & digest. Get a dose of adventure & inspiration with Boundless.
Invalid email address
The SBRX Group

Proudly elevating endurance sports through content, products & services

SBRX
RUN247
GET RACE READY - SHOP WITH SBRX
GET RACE READY - BUY WITH SBRX
Share to...