A year after giving birth, Aussie mom is top female in Ironman PH

Norman Lee Benjamin Riego on Jun 03, 2018 05:58 PM
Aussie mom is top female in Ironman PH
The sight of one-year-old daughter Mahli near the finish line gave Liz Blatchford (middle in photo) the final push she needed in the first-ever full-distance Ironman in the Philippines

SUBIC, ZAMBALES – Last Saturday, Liz Blatchford and husband Glen celebrated the first birthday of daughter Mahli here.

Just a day later, the Blatchford family was celebrating Liz’s win in the first-ever full-distance Ironman race in the country.

Liz, a triathlon stalwart in Australia, was, far and away, the fastest among seven female professional triathletes and made history as the first-ever female winner of the Century Tuna Ironman Philippines.

The 38-year-old logged a total time of 9:22.22 in the race covering 3.8 km of swimming, 180 km of biking, and 42.95 km of running.

With that, her winning margin compared to her closest competitor was a whopping 18 minutes.

However, Blatchford remained modest and said she didn’t expect her win to be as dominant as it was. “You can never count out your competitors and in Ironman, anything can happen. I’m just very happy it turned out this way,” she told reporters following her win.

For the Ironman Philippines female winner, her performance was just inspired by the presence of her little girl. “A lot of times, I was hurting during the race and I just thought about her,” she shared.

She then continued, “My husband brought her out and I saw her about 20 km during the run and she recognized me and she gave me a wave. That was fantastic and pulled me closer to the finish line.”

Blatchford’s win proves that being a mother is no hindrance to taking on a sport as grueling as triathlon.

Rather, she believes that she has even gotten stronger because of daughter Mahli. “Being mother is challenging in a lot of ways, but it makes you stronger as a person and you can use that as an athlete. It’s good for me,” she remarked.

Australia’s Dimity Lee Duke ended in second-place with a total time of 9:40.45 while New Zealand’s Simone Maier wound up in third-place with a total time of 9:47.39.

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