BONN 1100 participants were at the start line of the Bonn triathlon on Sunday. The 28th edition of the event was the battle of the defending champions.
Spontaneity is in the past. Horst Reichel decided from one day to the next to compete in the 2017 Bonn triathlon, as preparation for the Ironman in Frankfurt. This time, the 36-year-old had planned his participation in the 28th SWB Energie und Wasser Bonn Triathlon more in advance. The effect was the same. As in the previous year, Horst Reichel was able to savour victory in one of the most popular triathlon events in Germany.
“It was great here last year. That’s why I really wanted to compete here again this year,” said the victor. And this year Reichel, from DSW Darmstadt, the club for which the former Ironman champion Lother Leder also competed, made plenty of time for claps on the back and appreciative words after a total time of 2:47:41 for the 3.8 kilometre swim in the Rhine, 60 kilometre bike ride through the Siebengebirge and the final 15 kilometre run along the Beuel Rhine bank.
Paul Schuster from TuS Griesheim, competing in Bonn for the first time, needed exactly two minutes and 19 seconds longer for the distance. Tobias Drachler (Pro Athletes) could celebrate third place 94 seconds later.
Reichel said the bike ride was the foundation for his second victory in a row. “I went really fast, but then struggled a bit in the run afterwards.” However, those following could not benefit from the slight weakness in the future winner. Reichel was too far ahead for that. “I had good legs today, but the way ahead was far too far,” admitted runner-up Paul Schuster, who assessed Bonn as “a really good event.”
Verena Walter from the Iserlohner Team shed emotional tears. This was due less to her third victory in a row than to the 37-year-old’s long history of injury. “After my win last year, things went steadily downhill,” said Walter, who finished the 28th Bonn triathlon in a total time of 3:10:31 ahead of second place Sara Baumann from Tri Team Hagen (3:13:52) and third place Beate Görtz from ASV Cologne (3:15:29). “I had my last real competition in August 2017. That’s why I’m so happy that it worked again here today. I was hoping but had not counted on it going so well.”
Lord Mayor Ashok Sridharan made his debut
More than 1000 triathletes took part, including Bonn’s Lord Mayor, Ashok Sridharan. The 52-year-old had the pleasure of swimming in the Rhine for the first time as part of the relay competition. “A fantastic experience,” said the novice, who had put on a wetsuit for the first time. “Thanks to the excellent organisation, simply nothing could go wrong. So huge compliments to all those helping,” said the Lord Mayor.
The endurance event organised by PSV Bonn is one of the most popular triathlon events in Germany and this year again attracted domestic and international athletes to Bonn.
(Original text: Thomas Heinen, Bernd Joisten. Translation: kc)