Mark Robinson reports on maiden Ironman victories for two Britons at the UK showpiece in Bolton
Men: F Cartmell (GBR) 8:40:17
Women: Y Grice (GBR) 10:01:02
The Ironman circuit returned to Bolton for the second consecutive year at the start of August, and there were eye-catching and ground breaking victories for Britain’s Fraser Cartmell and Yvette Grice. The race was moved to the north west of England in 2009, having previously been staged in Sherbourne, Dorset. The latter was the venue for Cartmell’s first attempt at Ironman, in 2008, when he ran out of steam 15 miles into the run. Two years on, the Scotsman was a different proposition altogether.
He took about six minutes out of former winner Stephen Bayliss (GBR) on the bike leg and never looked back, coming home in a time of 8:40:17. For the first half of the race the two men were locked in battle alongside Belgium’s Axel Zeebroeke, who faded slightly on the run but still held on to claim a well-earned place on the podium.
“This was a big goal of mine for this season and I’m so proud my hard work has paid off,” said Cartmell.
In the women’s race there was a clean sweep on the podium for Britain, with Grice denying Bella Bayliss yet another victory at Ironman UK by reeling her in late on the running leg. Bayliss had built up a lead of around 15 minutes on exiting T2, but Grice put together an impressive 3:02 marathon split to overtake her in dramatic fashion with just two miles to go. Joanna Carritt also finished strongly to take third.