A German winner? Frederic Funk talks Singapore T100 prospects at season opener

We chat to IRONMAN 70.3 World Championship silver medallist, Frederic Funk, ahead of his 2024 season debut at Singapore T100

Writer & Long Course Triathlete
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Fifth in 2022, and silver medallist last year at the IRONMAN 70.3 World Championship, Germany’s Frederic Funk is one of the strongest and most consistent middle distance triathletes in the world.

Funk will be making his season debut this coming Sunday at the Singapore T100. Ahead of the racing, I sat down with Frederic and talked about his preparations, why he elected to skip Miami T100 and get his take on what he thinks it will take to win.

He also provided his podium predictions – read on to see if he backed himself to feature.


Miami no, Singapore go

The T100 season opened with much fanfare last month in Florida, but Frederic explained why he elected not to join the Miami start list.

“I always prefer to do a longer off-season, and then a long winter build-up and then race from usually the beginning of May until late October. So it’s already a long season starting in the middle of April and then going through to the end of November, so that’s why I skipped Miami.

“The beginning of March would just have been too early for me, and so I kind of needed this good base fitness going into the season. Of course, I also need to have that first race of the season to kind of get the cobwebs away and find a race routine, but I think my fitness is really good and I’ve also tried to do some specific preparation for the heat and humidity here. I think that’s worked out well… but you can’t ever 100% prepare for these conditions, so you have to kind of race smart.

“I’ll try to do that on Sunday, but I’d say that my expectations, or let’s say the pressure that I have on myself, are not as big as I usually have. So, I don’t think I can get disappointed too much because I know the rest of the season is definitely going to be even better than this race. But I’m still optimistic that I can have a great performance, or least show where I’m standing right now and build on that for the rest of the season.”

Challenge Kaiserwinkl-Walchsee 2023 - Photo Credit José Luis Hourcade / Challenge Walchsee 2023
Photo Credit: Jose Luis Hourcade

Having made that decision, were there any regrets when watching the racing from a distance? What did he learn?

“I actually didn’t have so much FOMO watching the race. The conditions were brutal as well, it got really hot on the track, and I know that my decision to just train this extra month… I was just confident in this decision. So I didn’t really have FOMO watching the race from home – or training camp to be specific – but it was good to see where everyone’s standing.

“On the other hand, I think for most of the guys it was a first race for them and they need to get into race rhythm, so they kind of have this advantage over me now for their second race. But it was probably good to see where everyone is standing, so I know in the race whether I can keep up with them, or if maybe it is smarter to let them go for now because they are definitely fitter for this time of the season.”

Bike power… but watch out for the conditions

Given Funk’s skillset, it was no surprise which element of the racing he is looking forward too when asked about the challenges of the Singapore course.

“I’m most excited about the bike course. Everyone is saying that it is super tough. You have these climbs over the bridge, and honestly watching the race last year on the broadcast you couldn’t really see that it was quite hilly, but afterwards the athletes were telling us about it. I’m excited for that because I’m a good cyclist and hope that will play into my cards.

“Obviously I’m nervous about the heat and humidity because I’ve never done a race in these conditions. I think the swim is already going to be very hot and you can’t really cool your body there, so it’s going to be very interesting how everyone’s race tactics are, if they are trying to keep their body temperatures down for a long as possible, or if there are attacks.”

Challenge Kaiserwinkl-Walchsee 2023 - Photo Credit José Luis Hourcade / Challenge Walchsee 2023
Photo Credit: Jose Luis Hourcade

The keys to success

What will it take to win here? Frederic thinks it could take a fine line between aggression and tactics.

“I think it is rather going to be someone who’s maybe not coming off the bike right at the front, but obviously close to the front. I think that’s what you need nowadays in T100 races. You need to be near the front at the swim, near the front on the bike and than have a really good run if you want to finish top.

“So first of all you have to have great fitness of course to win in this field, be good in these conditions and try to be patient in the race while keeping yourself close to the front. To have a solid finish, I think you can maybe pace yourself and not take any risks… but if you want to have that win, you maybe have to take one or another risk.”


Put on the spot, Frederic picked a German winner for the weekend… but doesn’t put himself in that podium contention. He thinks that will come a little later in the year.

“I think the wildcards are going to be really strong, as they have prepared themselves for this race and will want to show themselves in this race – maybe even better prepared than some of the contracted athletes.

“So I think I’m going to pick Mika Noodt, my fellow German athlete for first place. Then Kyle Smith for second and third place for Sam Long.”

Jenny Lucas-Hill
Written by
Jenny Lucas-Hill
Jenny Lucas-Hill is a writer, content creator and communications professional. A long-distance triathlon enthusiast, she has three full Iron-distance finishes to date & also loves watching the sport.


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