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Reed eyes 3-peat in Cobra Ironman

By WAYLON GALVEZ

LAPU-LAPU CITY – Australia’s Tim Reed has done his work, and is ready to defend his title and face the challenge of a strong field in today’s Cobra Iroman 70.3 at the Shangri-La Mactan here.

Reed is back after ruling the event last year in another test of endurance and determination when he faces other pros including 2016 World XTerra champion Maurico Mendez of Mexico, compatriot Samuel Betten and Cameron Brown from New Zealand.

Tara Borlain wins the Alaska IronKids 2017 at Shangri-La Hotel and Spa. (Rio Leonelle Deluvio)

Tara Borlain wins the Alaska IronKids 2017 at Shangri-La Hotel and Spa. (Rio Leonelle Deluvio)

“I’m extremely fit. I build my season getting strong for this and I’m ready to race,” said Reed, who is gunning for his third title here in the Philippines and sixth in his career in the 70.3 category.

“I saw the start list and that makes me excited. When you got good guys alongside you, it pushes you to a level you wouldn’t do if they weren’t there. We’ll make each other race a lot better,” added the 32-year-old triathlete who won in last year’s World Championship.

In the women’s side, the field is equally competitive and this year’s edition is an open race since Switzerland’s Carolina Steffen won’t be seeing action, as she is five months pregnant.

One of the pro participants that is hoping to win her first title is Filipino triathlete Kim Kilgroe.

“I’m feeling good and I’m excited to be back here racing with amazing athletes,” Kilgroe said as she tries to improve her 10th place finish when she first competed in the Ironman last year.

“I’m grateful to be with this kind of caliber in racing. I am proud to represent my heritage. It’s an exciting weekend for me and I’m looking forward to it. I just want to come away from this race a little faster, a little fitter and just give it everything I have,” added Kilgroe.

Over 2,600 participants from more than 50 countries are expected to answer the starting gun at the beachfront of the Shangri-La Mactan, where triathletes traverse 1.9km swim, 90 km bike, and 21.1 km run.

Meanwhile, young triathletes Tara Borlain and Juan Francisco Baniqued ruled the girls and boys events of the 13-14 categories to end their stint in Alaska Ironkids in memorable fashions.

Borlain, a member of the popular triathlon sisters with Sam and Cheska, captured her fifth IronKids title with a time of 41 minutes and 34 seconds, beating Nicole del Rosario (45:21) and Marielle Estreba (45:46).

Banaqued edged Joseff Miguel Quirino in a close fight as the two crossed the finish line with the same time of 38 minutes and 50 seconds, but the former won by a few milliseconds (not listed on the official results). Adrian Dionisio came in third (38:58).

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