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Posted: August 31, 2009  : Add to Mixx! Subscribe to stories like this

Triathlon: Viktor Zyemtsev and Nina Kraft Celebrate Victory at 2009 Ford Ironman Louisville

Aug. 30, 2009 (Louisville, Ky.) -- Today, Ukraine's Viktor Zyemtsev and Germany's Nina Kraft captured titles at the third annual Ford Ironman Louisville Triathlon. Zyemtsev enhanced his resume today, crossing the finish line in first with an overall time of 8:25:27. Kraft celebrated her first full-distance Ironman win since 2007, with a time of 9:20:21.

Hawaii's John Flanagan led out of the swim, which took place in the Ohio River, and set a new swim course record of 44 minutes and 54 seconds. Luke McKenzie appeared determined to pass Flanagan during the bike and accomplished that task by mile 60. McKenzie, Flanagan, Zyemtsev and Swen Sundberg remained close through the second half of the bike, until McKenzie entered bike-to-run transition in first. He maintained a sizeable lead throughout the marathon, before Zyemtsev surged and caught the Australian at mile 22. The two ran side-by-side through mile 25 when Zyemtsev finally pulled away and headed toward the finish to claim his seventh Ironman title.

Top five professional men's results are as follows:

1. Viktor Zyemtsev, UKR 8:25:27
2. Luke McKenzie, AUS 8:26:01
3. Raynard Tissink, ZAF 8:39:09
5. Maximilian Longree, GER 8:46:31

Kraft exited the water in first and traded the lead through the early stages of the bike with Maki Nishiuchi of Japan. Kraft pulled away shortly thereafter and was later overtaken by Lisbeth Kristensen at mile 60. Kristensen continued to open up a gap on the German and started the 26.2-mile run nearly 9 minutes ahead of Kraft. Kristensen was caught by Kraft around mile 18. Kraft dominated the final 8 miles of the run and crossed the line 3 minutes and 36 seconds ahead of second place finisher, Kristensen. American, Kim Loeffler, ran her way into third with the fastest women's marathon time of 3 hours and 5 minutes.

Top five professional women's results are as follows:

1. Nina Kraft, GER 9:20:21
2. Lisbeth Kristensen, DEN 9:23:57
3. Kim Loeffler, USA 9:38:23
4. Kate Pallardy, USA 9:56:45
5. Fernanda Keller, BRA 10:00:22

Today's event saw 2,449 athletes enter the water and begin the Ironman journey that consists of a 2.4-mile swim, a 112-mile bike and a 26.2-mile marathon. Weather conditions were ideal for racing with low humidity, slight cloud cover and temperatures hovering around 75 degrees Fahrenheit. Participants ranged in age from 18 to 72 years old and traveled from nearly all 50 states and more than 20 countries to experience the event in Louisville. Kentucky drew more than 200 athletes to compete in today's local endurance event.

For race results, photos or other event-related information, visit

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