A. Brownlee (GBR) and L. Philipp (GER) travel down to Nelson Mandela Bay to take on the 18th ISUZU IRONMAN African Championship

Double Olympic gold medalist, Alistair Brownlee (GBR) will kickstart his IRONMAN season at the ISUZU IRONMAN African Championship event on March 5th

This will be the second time Brownlee has raced in Nelson Mandela Bay after an impressive performance in 2018 which saw him narrowly losing to Jan Frodeno at the IRONMAN 70.3 World Championship which took place in South Africa

2022 IRONMAN European Champion, Laura Philipp (GER), who holds the world best time for an IRONMAN triathlon will also be looking for a statement win in South Africa and the title of 2023 IRONMAN African Champion 

HAMBURG, GERMANY – JUNE 05: Laura Philipp of Germany competes in the run leg during the IRONMAN Hamburg on June 05, 2022 in Hamburg, Germany. (Photo by Alexander Scheuber/Getty Images for IRONMAN)

The 18th edition of the ISUZU IRONMAN® African Championship is set to take place on March 05, 2023. This early season event offers men’s and women’s qualifying slots to the VinFast IRONMAN® World Championship in Nice, France on September 10, 2023 (men), and Kailua-Kona, Hawai`i on October 14, 2023 (women). The professional men and women’s field will also be racing for a piece of the $150,000 USD total professional prize.

Once again, the South African event will set the tone for the rest of the season with a strong professional lineup expected to take to the start line in Nelson Mandela Bay. The professional field features Olympic Games gold medalist, Alistair Brownlee, who will be racing the ISUZU IRONMAN African Championship for the first time. However, Brownlee is no stranger to the Nelson Mandela Bay racecourse having raced there in 2018 when he narrowly lost to Jan Frodeno (GER) and picked up a second-place podium finish at the IRONMAN 70.3 World Championship. The professional men’s field will also feature Leon Chevalier (FRA), Clément Mignon (FRA), Rasmus Svenningsson (SWE) and one of the fastest professional cyclists, Cameron Wurf (AUS). In the absence of defending champion, Kyle Buckingham (RSA), fellow South Africans Bradley Weiss (RSA) and Matt Trautman (RSA) who took second and third places respectively last year will surely be looking for a home win this year. 

Triathletes compete at the Isuzu IRONMAN African Championship held in Nelson Mandela Bay in the Eastern Cape of South Africa on 03 April 2022. (Photo by Chris Hitchcock/IRONMAN)

The women’s field may be smaller but promises to be just as exciting. With the absence of defending champion Daniela Bleymehl (GER), a new champion will be crowned. Laura Philipp (GER) is coming off a memorable season last year which saw her produce an IRONMAN world best time of 8:18:20, winning the 2022 IRONMAN European Championship in Frankfurt, Germany. However, she won’t have it all that easy with Magda Nieuwoudt (RSA) being very familiar with the ISUZU IRONMAN African Championship racecourse and having podiumed at the event last year. The women’s field will also feature the likes of Fenella Langridge (GBR) who will fancy her chances as the course has been kind to British athletes, with both Lucy Charles-Barclay (GBR) [2018; 2019] and Ruth Astle (GBR) [2001] having won here in recent times. Other athletes to lookout for are Giorgia Priarone (ITA), Jade Roberts (RSA), Penny Slater (AUS) and Laura Zimmermann (GER).      

The event returns to the original swim course venue, where athletes will take on a 3.8km swim at Hobie Beach, followed by a 180.2km bike on arguably one of the most spectacular bike courses on the IRONMAN world circuit. The run will take athletes along the beach fronts of Summerstrand and Humewood to Flat Rocks. Athletes will complete a 42.2km run before heading down the magic red carpet to the finish line. 

PORT ELIZABETH – SEPTEMBER 2: Alistair Brownlee of Great Britain runs to a 2nd Place finish during the Isuzu IRONMAN 70.3 World Championship Men in Port Elizabeth, South Africa on September 2, 2018. Over 4,500 athletes from over 100 countries will be represented in this years 70.3 World Championship. (Photo by Donald Miralle/Getty Images for IRONMAN).

The ISUZU IRONMAN® 70.3® Nelson Mandela Bay will also be taking place on the same day and athletes will take on the same course, however, completing half the distance. This will be an age-group only race and athletes will swim 1.9km’s at Hobie Beach; bike 90.1km’s and run 21.1km’s before finishing on the red carpet at Hobie Beach.

The full professional start list for the 2023 ISUZU IRONMAN African Championship is below:

Bib NumberLast NameFirst NameCountry
1BrownleeAlistairUnited Kingdom
2WeissBradleySouth Africa
3TrautmanMattSouth Africa
7Lyngsø PetersenMathiasDenmark
20Elosegui ArmendarizEnekoSpain
24De BruinGerhardSouth Africa
Female Pro
26NieuwoudtMagdaSouth Africa
27LangridgeFenellaUnited Kingdom
29RobertsJadeSouth Africa
32AddieLauraUnited Kingdom
33de BoerMarleneNetherlands
38SawyerMariellaSouth Africa

For more information about the ISUZU IRONMAN African Championship and ISUZU IRONMAN 70.3 Nelson Mandela Bay, please visit www.ironman.com/im-south-africa.

Triathletes compete at the Isuzu IRONMAN African Championship held in Nelson Mandela Bay in the Eastern Cape of South Africa on 03 April 2022. (Photo by Chris Hitchcock/IRONMAN)

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