Matt Hanson | Professional Triathlete
5x Ironman Champion/ 4x 70.3 Champion

Ironman Argentina Race Report

Ironman Argentina was a bit of a last minute decision for me. I was fighting off a few niggles, and was just generally a bit tired after what had been a long season. But I really didn’t want to end the season on the tail end of three disappointing races. I flatted in Augusta, had a terrible day in Kona, and just didn’t have a spark in Waco. So I made a late decision to head to Mar Del Plata to try to get my ticket punched to Kona.

Race Morning 
I arrived into transition in the morning and got everything set up and ready to roll. We were all noticing that there were no swim buoys out on the course and no one really knew what was going on. Finally, we got an update that they were shortening the swim to 1500m due to the water and air temperature. I was actually a bit disappointed. After a terrible swim in Kona and the Waco 70.3 swim getting canceled I was anxious to get back at it and put together a good swim. I spent a few hours race week practicing my swim entry/exit with the chop and trying to use the wetsuit to keep me on top of the chop. So I was ready to roll…but just went with it.

Swim – 22:18

I got off the line really quickly, and was leading the group into the water. I did two successful dolphin dives and went for the third and went a bit to deep and face planted in the sand. Lovely. I was able to recover and get back to swimming but that caused me to miss the first group. At the first turn, I was able to surge and get away from the second group. I was swimming well and had the first group in sight going into the last turn but I ended up not turning sharp enough and swimming about 100m extra. I ended up coming out of the water right in front of the 2nd group.

Transition 1 – 2:25

I was able to quickly get my wetsuit off and got cleanly mounted and on my way still right in front of the 2nd group.

Bike – 4:28:46

This ride was the highest power I’ve held through a Ironman distance, so I was quite happy with how everything went. It was a tail wind on the way out and head wind on the way back for a two loop course. The roads were a rough chip seal as well which made for pretty slow times. To make matters worse, the first bump of the course, I launched my 1000 calorie bottle that I was going to rely on for the back half of the course. Nothing really of note happened on the bike, I sat on front of the group for 112 miles, never once did any of them try to make a move or come up front. I was able to put some time into the 1st pack of swimmers, but Weiss dropped me early and put a significant amount of time in through the ride. I definitely was running short on calories by the end of the ride and really faded on the power as I made my way back to town the final time.

Transition 2 – 1:12

Another clean transition here. I put about 20-30 seconds on the group that I had just towed around for 112 miles which definitely helped the confidence leading into the run.

Run – 2:45:07

I wanted to get some distance on the group early on just to make sure none of them tried to sit on my hip on the run as well. So I went out pretty hard. I was a few minutes back from 2nd, but Weiss was almost 10 minutes down the road from me. I decided to take a conservative approach and really protect 2nd place and my Kona spot. Weiss was running well and I had not run much at all since Kona due to a little niggle I’d been fighting off. So trying to chase him down was just not going to be a smart move. So I did what I needed to do to hold on to 2nd and grab my slot to the 2019 Ironman World Championships.

Overall – 7:39:47

This was a great way to end the season. I was able to put together a solid race and grab my Kona slot. Mission accomplished and on to 2019

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