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Gloria Challenge Mogan Half Ironman (70.3) Gran Canaria

The race, a non-drafting event started at 8am on Amadores beach, the south west coast of Gran Canaria between Puerto Rico and Puerto De Mogan. Alistair went into an early lead on the 1.9km (1.2 miles) swim course leading at the half-way point, finishing the swim in 2nd place behind Davide Giardini who completed the swim in 25.16, Brownlee just 4 seconds behind the leader. Mark Buckingham had a great swim 8th at the turn, finishing in 9th place (25.32), just 12 seconds behind his training partner.

mark buckingham

Double Olympic Triathlon Champion, Alistair Brownlee and his Holmfirth Harrier training partner Mark Buckingham made their debuts in long-distance triathlons at the Challenge Half Ironman (70.3 miles) event in Gran Canaria on Saturday 22 April 2017. Brownlee on the eve of his 29th Birthday won the race in impressive style with Buckingham joining him on the podium taking the bronze medal.

The race, a non-drafting event started at 8am on Amadores beach, the south west coast of Gran Canaria between Puerto Rico and Puerto De Mogan. Alistair went into an early lead on the 1.9km (1.2 miles) swim course leading at the half-way point, finishing the swim in 2nd place behind Davide Giardini who completed the swim in 25.16, Brownlee just 4 seconds behind the leader. Mark Buckingham had a great swim 8th at the turn, finishing in 9th place (25.32), just 12 seconds behind his training partner.

The bike course of 90km (56 miles) was 4 loops, from Amadores to Anfi Del Mar, before turning to Puerto De Mogan and then three loops from Amadores to Puerto Rico and back. The Olympic Champion set a dominant pace, opening a 3 minute lead by 40kms and arriving at T2 in 2.26.33. Mark Buckingham moved into 6th place on the first lap, maintaining a high tempo throughout the bike course behind two Belgian athletes, a Swiss man and Italian as he reached T2 in a time of 2.36.16, about 10 minutes behind Brownlee.

gloria challenge mogan half ironman

The run course was also along the coast road consisting of two loops (21kms - 13.1 miles, half marathon) between Amadores and Puerto Rico. Buckingham set off at a blistering pace in pursuit of the race leaders. He moved into 5th place in the first 2kms, then 4th by 5kms and third place by 10kms, recording the fastest split of 35.08. He realised it would require a tremendous effort to catch the 2nd athlete and decided to slow down as he is due to lead Great Britain at the European Duathlon Championships in Soria, Spain next week. Alistair Brownlee won the race in a time of 4.03.09, followed by Heemeryck Pieter, of Belgium in 4.11.23 and Mark Buckingham taking the bronze medal in 4.15.36, with a run time of 1.13.46, almost three minutes ahead of 4th placed Julian Mutterer of Germany. This was a superb debut performance by the two Yorkshire men, with only the Belgian athlete who specialises in the triathlon and Half Ironman distance, splitting them on the podium.

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