Mendez En Fuego! Return of the Rads

Published April 3rd, 2018 by Hig

Mauricio Mendez, Radka Kahlefeldt win Davao 70.3n 


Mauricio Mendez of Mexico won his third career 70.3 and Radka Kahlefeldt of the Czech Republic dominated the women's field just 11 weeks after the birth of her first child to take the victories at Ironman 70.3 Davao.

Mendez started his day with a 5th-best swim that put him 7 seconds behind the leader and posted a 4th best bike split that left him with a 3:14 deficit at T2. Mendez then uncorked a sizzling 1:16:14 run that was as hot as the weather to finish in 3:50:32 with a 1:55 margin of victory over Tim Reed of Australia and 3:14 over 3rd place Tim Van Berkel of Australia.

Mendez thus added his third 70.3 victory after wins at Texas in 2017 and Los Cabos in 2016.

Kahlefeldt went wire-to-wire with a women’s-best 26:03 swim, women’s-best 2:23:05 bike split and women’s 3rd-fastest 1:33:02 run to finish in 4:25:38 with an 11:16 margin of victory over Naomi Washizu of Japan and 13:34 over 3rd place Dimity Lee Duke of Australia.

One year and a week since her last Ironman race, a second place at Taiwan 70.3, and 11 weeks after the birth of her first child Ruby, Kahlefeldt claimed her sixth victory at the 70.3 distance.


Eric Watson, an Australian born resident of Bahrain, led the men’s swim wave in 23:32 which gave him a 3 seconds lead on Brent McMahon of Canada, 5 seconds on Sam Betten of Australia, 5 seconds on Australian Ben Allen, 7 seconds on 2016 XTERRA World Champion Mauricio Mendez of Mexico, 14 seconds on 2016 Ironman 70.3 World Champion Tim Reed of Australia, 1:12 on three-time Ironman World Champion Craig Alexander of Australia, 1:13 on Tim Van Berkel of Australia, 1:17 on Kyle Buckingham of South Africa, and 1:21 on 2017 XTERRA World Champion Bradley Weiss of South Africa.

Early on the bike leg, McMahon, Reed, Allen, Betten, and Mendez broke away to a lead. After 15km, McMahon, Betten, Reed, and Mendez opened a one minute gap over a group including Weiss, Van Berkel, Alexander, Allen, and Buckingham.

Halfway through the bike leg, the chase group caught the leaders and Buckingham took a 1:24 lead with Van Berkel, Reed, Alexander, McMahon, Mendez, and Betten close behind. Weiss and Allen were riding together, two minutes back of the chase group.

At 75km, Buckingham extended his lead to 2:25 over Van Berkel and Reed, while Alexander, Betten, Mendez and McMahon rode together 3:05 arrears. After a tied-for race-best 2:05:41 bike split, Buckingham led the men into T2 with a 1:52 lead on Van Berkel, 2:03 on Reed, 3:14 on Mendez, 3:16 on McMahon, 3:17 on Alexander, and 3:18 on Betten.

On the first kilometer of the run, Van Berkel and Reed sliced 30 seconds off Buckingham’s lead. Buckingham led Reed by 1:26, Van Berkel by 1:36, Alexander and Mendez by 2:49, and 3:10 to Betten.

By 6km of the run, Reed took the lead by 54 seconds on Van Berkel, 1:06 on Buckingham, 1:46 on Mendez, and 2:06 on Alexander. By 10.8km of the run, Mendez charged into second place, 1:05 behind Reed. Van Berkel held 3rd, 1:31 behind the leader and Alexander stood 4th, 3:24 back.

Pushing hard on his way to a race-best 1:16:14 run, Mendez overtook Reed with 5km remaining. At 15.7km, Mendez opened a 28 seconds lead on Reed and 1:41 on Van Berkel.


Just under three months after the birth of her daughter Ruby, Radka Kahlefeldt of the Czech Republic led the women’s swim in 26:02 which gave her a 1:19 lead on Kirralee Seidel of Australia, 3:14 on Lisa Tyack of Australia, 3:16 on Leanne Szeto of Hong Kong, 3:19 on Dimity Lee Duke of Australia, 3:21 on Erin Green of the U.S., 3:23 on Naomi Washizu of Japan, and 3:32 on Laura Brown of Great Britain.

By the 15km mark of the bike leg, Kahlefeldt opened a 2:30 lead on the field. By 45km, she led Seidel by 3:13, Tyack by 6:18, Green by 6:49, Washizu by 10:04, and Sarah Lester by 12:55.

After a women’s-best 2:23:35 bike split, Kahlefeldt arrived at T2 nearly 7 minutes ahead of Seidel, with 10 minutes on Tyack and 12 minutes on Green.

After 6km of the run, Kahlefeldt bolstered her lead to 7:25 on Seidel. However, in the heat, Seidel was wilting to a 1:42:25 run which dropped her to 5th at the line. Naomi Washizu, on the other hand, was charging through the field to a women’s-best 1:28:08 run which advanced her to second place at the finish. Similarly, Dimity Lee Duke of Australia cut through the rest of the contenders to 3rd place with a women’s second-best 1:30:50 half marathon.

After a women’s 3rd-fastest 1:33:02 run, Kahlefeldt cruised home in 4:25:38 with an 11:16 margin of victory over Washizu and 13:34 over 3rd-place Duke.

Ironman 70.3 Davao
Davao, Philippines
March 25, 2018
S 1.2 mi. / B 56 mi. / R 13.1 mi.



1. Mauricio Mendez (MEX) 3:50:30 S 23:37 T1 1:10 B 2:08:07 T2 1:24 R 1:16:14
2. Tim Reed (AUS) 3:52:25 S 23:44 T1 1:13 B 2:06:47 T2 1:23 R 1:19:20
3. Tim Van Berkel (AUS) 3:53:43 T1 1:13 B 2:05:41 T2 1:24 R 1:20:45
4. Craig Alexander (AUS) 3:56:23 S 24:42 T1 1:18 B 2:06:57 T2 1:25 R 1:22:02
5. Bradley Weiss (RSA) 3:58:38 S 24:51 T1 1:14 B 2:11:04 T2 1:46 R 1:19:43


1. Radka Kahlefeldt (CZE) 4:25:38 S 26:03 T1 1:21 B 2:23:35 T2 1:40 R 1:33:02
2. Naomi Washizu (JPN) 4:36:54 S 29:25 T1 1:23 B 2:36:01 T2 1:59 R 1:28:08
3. Dimity Lee Duke (AUS) 4:39:12 S 29:21 T1 1:29 B 2:36:01 T2 1:34 R 1:30:50
4. Lisa Tyack (AUS) 4:41:02 S 29:16 T1 1:31 B 2:30:39 T2 1:36 R 1:38:01
5. Kirralee Seidel (AUS) 4:43:37 S 27:22 T1 1:16 B 2:28:56 T2 1:25 R 1:42:25

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