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Fred first in France

Frederik van Lierde never looked back at Ironman France after taking the lead on his Cervélo P5X.

Fred’s fourth victory at Ironman France — and second in nine months — was again the result of his trademark consistency. After coming out of the water in third place, the Belgian surged into the lead with a sizzling 4:39:00 bike split and arrived at T2 with a 26-second edge. He then extended this advantage to more than five minutes with a second-fastest marathon, finishing in 8:31:31.

“Exiting the water in third position allowed me to implement my race strategy: To set the pressure from the start of the bike section,” Fred explained, adding that the revamped bike course and 30-degree temperatures required a “full focus on my nutrition plan.” Good thing the P5X has been engineered to feature more customizable modular storage than any other triathlon bike.

Refuelled and rehydrated, Fred attacking the marathon with his usual resolve. But at the 8km mark, an unusual challenge presented itself: He inadvertently collided with a shower nozzle, causing his head to bleed profusely. After receiving medical attention, the bleeding eventually subsided and Fred was able “to retrieve my focus and dig deep into my mental strength.”

“Winning this race again, after an eventful day, makes me very proud. So motivating as I work towards Hawaii 2017!”