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T100 Singapore women’s results: Ashleigh Gentle hunts down LCB for brilliant win

Aussie star underlines her position as the best over the 100km distance as a trademark phenomenal run lands her the victory.

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Ashleigh Gentle produced a sensational run to overhaul Lucy Charles-Barclay for a thrilling victory at the Singapore T100.

The Australian, who was racing for the first time this season, is the most successful athlete ever over the 100km distance and this was her fourth PTO / T100 win.

But she had to work hard to close down the reigning IRONMAN World Champion, who had led from the outset, as she was 5:28 adrift at the end of the bike.

LCB did nothing wrong in the stifling heat but Gentle was remorseless as she cut into the gap – it was 3:37 after the first of three laps, 1:01 with one to go and the catch came with just over 4km remaining.

There was plenty of drama in behind too.

Lucy Buckingham, a wildcard in the race, had led with her namesake and fellow Brit Charles-Barclay after the swim and bike. And she kept on superbly during the run, her weakest discipline, but just missed out on the podium which was rounded out by Els Visser (NED).

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Swim – LCB sets early pace

It was no surprise to see Charles-Barclay lead out the non-wetsuit swim.

But while she led from start to finish in the water, she did have company as Buckingham got on her feet, followed by Rebecca Clarke (NZL).

The trio had pulled 27 seconds clear of the rest by the Aussie exit at halfway – and the gap would go further and further out as the field began to splinter in behind.

When the swim was over the front three remain locked together, with Haley Chura in fourth at +1:12.

Of the big favourites, Gentle was at +1:38 in sixth, Miami T100 winner India Lee (GBR) was a further six seconds back in ninth and Chelsea Sodaro (USA) had a whopping four minutes to make up.

Bike – Lucys power into five-minute lead

Three soon became two as the two Lucys forged clear of Clarke early on the bike.

At the end of the first of eight 10km laps, they were 55 seconds clear of the Kiwi, with Gentle now up to fourth at +1:29.

Going backwards though was Sodaro, who was enduring a tough day and she would exit the race early on the third lap – more details here.

Heading towards the halfway point and up front there was a key change as Buckingham eased past Charles-Barclay, with the two of them having now opened up an advantage of more than three minutes on Gentle and the rest.

Speaking on the live T100 broadcast, Buckingham’s husband Mark cautioned that the race wouldn’t really start for her until 10km into the 18km run given her past struggles with the heat.

But the gaps continued to go out. At the end of the fifth lap, the two Lucys were now 4:12 clear of Gentle who had now been joined by Lee, Imogen Simmonds (SUI) and Lucy Byram (GBR).

However on the seventh lap Buckingham suddenly stopped pedalling as she appeared to be battling cramp in her left hamstring, allowing LCB to cruise past and back into the lead. But Buckingham, who was brilliantly showcasing why she merited a wild card for the race, was soon back in the game and on her tail.

All the while though there was an added threat to everyone as storm clouds were rolling in – any lightning within 13km would put an immediate stop to the race.

Thankfully the lightning never made it that close but starting the run the humidity level had jumped from 58% to 78%.

Heading into T2, Charles-Barclay was 12 seconds ahead of Buckingham, with Visser in third at +5:03, Gentle fourth at +5:28, Byram fifth at +5:45 and Simmonds sixth at +6:07.

Run – Remorseless Gentle hunts down LCB

In last August’s PTO Asian Open in Singapore, eventual winner Gentle was 5:35 quicker on the run than Charles-Barclay, who was making her return from injury, so the margins were potentially tight.

And the Aussie made a statement start to the 18km run as she quickly reeled in and passed Visser to move into third.

At the end of the first of three 6km laps, it was tantalisingly poised with Charles-Barclay leading the way by 2:43 to Buckingham but what had been 5:28 to Gentle was now down to 3:37.

Early on the second lap, Gentle flew past Buckingham and just one person remained ahead of her as she set her sights on Charles-Barclay.

With one lap left there was just 1:01 between them and the seemingly inevitable catch came with 4.1km to go.

Gentle powered clear from that point for a famous win, finishing 1:34 ahead of LCB who was second again, just as she was in Miami.

Visser completed the podium, with Amelia Watkinson (NZL) just pipping Buckingham for fourth.

Despite the searing temperatures there were only two other DNFs in addition to Sodaro – France’s Marjolaine Pierre and India Lee, who had struggled with illness following her victory in Miami.

Singapore T100 – Saturday April 13 2024
2km / 80km / 18km

PRO WOMEN

  • 1. Ashleigh Gentle (AUS) – 3:44:23 [27:41/2:05:26/1:09:10]
  • 2. Lucy Charles-Barclay (GBR) – 3:45:58 [26:03/2:01:18/1:16:18]
  • 3. Els Visser (NED) – 3:51:38 [30:02/2:02:37/1:16:32]
  • 4. Amelia Watkinson (NZL) – 3:52:03 [30:04/2:07:24/1:12:13]
  • 5. Lucy Buckingham (GBR) – 3:52:10 [26:07/2:01:39/1:22:06]
Ashleigh Gentle Singapore T100 2024 finish line photo credit PTO
Ashleigh Gentle wins again in Singapore [Photo credit: PTO]
Jonathan Turner
Written by
Jonathan Turner
Jonathan Turner is News Director for both TRI247 and RUN247, and is accustomed to big-name interviews, breaking news stories and providing unrivalled coverage for endurance sports.  

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