8th Sep 2016
Maltese Triathlete Hannah Pace beat stiff competition over the weekend, when, as the first Maltese female triathlete to qualify for the Ironman 70.3 World Championships, she claimed third place on the 18-24 Age Group podium.
Pace qualified to represent Malta at the World Championships last year, in the very first race of such distance that she competed in. Pace has consistently performed so much so that this year, during Ironman 70.3 in Budapest, she also qualified for the 2017 World Championships.
This year’s World Championships race took place in Australia’s Sunshine coast, where over 3,000 of the world’s best triathletes took part in a 1.9km ocean swim, a challenging bike course, which started off flat on the motorway but becoming hilly as athletes progressed into the 90km route. A short and very steep hill was also thrown in, to make the course more taxing. The last segment of the race saw Pace tackle a 21km run split onto two laps along the coast.
“Race did not start as I would have liked it to as it got a bit overwhelming in the water, so my swim was not one of the best. This meant that I would had have to work hard on the bike to move up some places. Bike was fast for the first 20- 30km then it got super tough, as I have never gone up anything so steep in my life. The bike segment took a lot out of me and was concerned about the half marathon that lay ahead, but I managed to pull off a pretty fast run” enthused Pace after the race
Racing amongst some very experienced and high level athletes, Pace did not have expectations for a podium placing and it was only when she crossed the finish line that she was aware of her success.
“This race was a year of dedication and hard work, the level is super high and for a lot of athletes in my age group these Championships are a stepping stone to turning professional. Although stunning the course was very hard and I never expected such an amazing result and am especially chuffed since I also managed to beat some professional athletes who are considered to be the best in the world and have qualified to be there” said Pace.
Pace’s participation in the Ironman 70.3 World Championships was made possible through the support of SportMalta, Garmin Malta and Go and Fun Green Energy Drink Malta. Pace is also supported by cfragrances, TeamSport, Team Barry Malta International Challenge Marathon and emvigee pr & marketing.
Malta was also represented by Birkirkara St. Joseph Triathlete Rudolph Agius, who gave a very fine showing to complete the course in 4 hours 40 minutes and 25 seconds. Agius has had some very good races this year, most notably his performance in Ironman 70.3 Calella Barcelona which earned him his qualification for this race.