Joe Skipper opens up on devastating disappointment at IRONMAN World Championship


Joe Skipper has opened on the devastating day he endured at last Sunday’s IRONMAN World Championship in Nice – describing it as “probably the most disappointing experience I’ve ever had”.

The popular 35-year-old British star went into the big showdown on the Cote d’Azur in great shape and with high hopes, after an impressive victory at IRONMAN Lake Placid in July and then a pre-race preparation split between Font Romeu and Nice.

On Sunday those high hopes were left in tatters though as he came home 30th of the 32 finishers on a brutal day in the south of France.

After taking a few days to reflect on the disappointment, Skipper provided a post-race debrief which is as ever brutally honest and heartfelt.

Joe Skipper on Nice misery

Writing on his Instagram account, he said: “It’s taken me a while to write something about my race at the world championships as honestly I’ve just been so down and disappointed by it! I’ve been driving back gradually over the last 4 days with @lmeen14 and Arabella and thats helped clear my head.

“Before the race I spent 4 weeks at altitude in font romeu and then the final 2 weeks around Nice. My training in the lead up had gone really well and I was hitting decent numbers in all 3 disciplines. I felt great leading into the race and everything was pointing towards me having a great race.

“I’m not entirely sure what happened and why my race was so bad as I honestly didn’t see it coming. My swimming before was in the best shape it had ever been in and I was hitting times I’ve never seen before so to have my worst swim at a world champs was disappointing but the race was still far from over on a course like this one. Out onto the bike I felt like I was putting a lot of effort in but getting very little speed from it and to be honest the day went further and further downhill. I won’t dwell on it anymore but I managed to drag myself across the finish line in the end. It was very tough to do but the amazing support i had from everyone out on course and all my friends and family that had come over got me through it. Also thanks to all my sponsors for the kind messages of support as well.”

IM Florida next for Joe

That Lake Placid win was a rare beacon of light in what ultimately turned out to be a disappointing 2023 campaign so far for Joe, as he honestly admitted. But he will attempt to salvage some more positivity when he takes on another North American challenge in the coming weeks.

He revealed: “Honestly it was probably the most disappointing experience I’ve ever had and caps off a really shit year. I want to say thanks everyone for the messages you’ve sent me. I’ve read every one and there’s been too many to reply to but they have definitely helped lift my spirits. I’ll be racing Ironman Florida next in an attempt to put my fitness to good use and I’m extremely motivated now to finish the year on a more positive note!”

Graham Shaw
Written by
Graham Shaw
Graham has been involved with TRI247 & RUN247 since the summer of 2021. Since then he has provided strategic direction for all news and is passionate about the growth of triathlon as a fan sport.
Latest News
Sam Laidlow IRONMAN World Championship 2023 breaks tape for victory
The Sam Laidlow project: The big secret to his success, and what makes his journey different
George Peasgood September 2023 smiles teacup photo credit: @chrisdaysays on Instagram
George Peasgood is busy living, one year on from horror crash as he continues to defy the odds
Ruth Astle St George finish line 2022 photo credit Tom Pennington Getty Images for IRONMAN
Ruth Astle preparing for Kona with “nerves and excitement” after a challenging year of setbacks
Emma Pallant-Browne World Duathlon champion 2023 photo credit Ben Lumley / World Triathlon
Emma Pallant-Browne shares the good, the bad and the ugly after a season full of highs and lows
Lionel Sanders training pic August 2023 photo credit Talbot Cox
Lionel Sanders the coach? ‘No Limits’ goes deep on Augusta misery and makes one immediate career decision