Ironman Melbourne 2012 Predictions

A field of pros second only to Ironman Hawaii will be going for top spot on the podium in the Ironman Melbourne 2012 Asia-Pacific Championships.

The pro men and women winners of this race will be well on their way to nailing down a spot for the World Championships in Kona in the Fall of 2012.

There are only three races in the world that offer 4000 Kona Ranking Points to the winners and Melbourne is one of them. Second and third place winners will also do very well and will bank 3,520 points for 3,120 points respectively.

Even fourth and fifth score big points with 2,800 and 2,400 points up for grabs.

Melbourne is ranked as a P-4000 race along with the European Championships in Frankfurt and the U.S. Championships in New York later this year.

These point awards are huge when you consider that Ironman races like Texas, South Africa, and New Zealand award 2000 points(P-2000 race)to the winner, and Ironman U.K. or Ironman Canada for instance offer (P-1000 races)1000 points to the winner.

In other words, coming in second or third in Ironman Melbourne is like winning both Ironman South Africa and Ironman Canada.

So the stakes are very high and this will be one very exciting race.

PROS ENTRY LIST FOR IRONMAN MELBOURNE 2012

Of course these lists are subject to change in the event of last minute withdrawals, but this is the most current start list for both pro men and women.

As a matter of fact, top contender Peter Jacobs has officially withdrawn from the race.

Another late shocker was Leanda Cave withdrawing from the race at the last minute. Her comment and reason for not competing in Ironman Melbourne 2012…..

I have been battling with fatigue since finishing 4th in Panama 70.3. I have had to back off my training significantly, and therefore I have just not done the work to do an Ironman and do it well. I never race unless I’m prepared to have a shot at winning.

THE PRO MEN

Craig ALEXANDER Cronulla (NSW)
Luke MCKENZIE Sunshine Beach (QLD)
Eneko LLANOS Spain
Luke BELL Elwood (VIC)
Cameron BROWN New Zealand
Frederik VAN LIERDE Belgium
Greg BENNETT Australia
Joe GAMBLES Boulder (TAS)
Jason SHORTIS Tweed Heads (NSW)
Bart AERNOUTS Belgium
Marko ALBERT Estonia
Mitchell ANDERSON West Melbourne (VIC)
Johan BORG South Fremantle (WA)
Dan BROWN Philippines
Finnbar CRENNAN Wallsend (NSW)
Fredrik CRONEBORG Sweden
David DELLOW Mooloolaba (QLD)
Clayton FETTELL Lennox Head (NSW)
Justin GRANGER Noosa Heads (QLD)
Jens GRØNBEK Denmark
Romain GUILLAUME France
Esben HOVGAARD Denmark
Todd ISRAEL Crows Nest (NSW)
Joel JAMESON Great Britain
Bert JAMMAER Belgium
Oyvind JOHANNESSEN Norway
Lothar LEDER Germany
Sergio MARQUES Portugal
Paul MATTHEWS Aus
Edo MEER Netherlands
Hiroyuki NISHIUCHI Japan
Courtney OGDEN Como (WA)
Jens PETERSEN-BACH Denmark
Josh RIX Glen Iris (VIC)
Alejandro SANTAMARIA Spain
Billeau SIMON France
Gudmund SNILSTVEIT Norway
Shinya SUGANUMA Japan
Sudrie SYLVAIN France
Petr VABROUSEK Czech Republic
Matty WHITE Magill (SA)
Pawel WISNIEWSKI Cheltenham (VIC)

PRO WOMEN

Mirinda CARFRAE Australia
Leanda CAVE Great Britain
Rachel JOYCE Great Britain
Caroline STEFFEN Mooloolaba (SUI) 
Rebekah KEAT Burleigh Heads (QLD)
Belinda GRANGER Noosa Heads (QLD)
Amanda STEVENS United States
Jessica JACOBS United States
Michelle MITCHELL Woodroffe (NT)
Carrie LESTER Buderim (QLD)
Beranek ANJA Germany
Suzanne BLACKBORROW Belmont (VIC)
Gina CRAWFORD New Zealand
Conny DAUBEN Germany
Tine DECKERS Belgium
Marthe EIKRE-TELLE Norway
Silvia FELT Germany
Elly FRANKS South Yarra (WA)
Dede GRIESBAUER United States
Sara GROSS Canada
Mareen HUFE Germany
Fernanda KELLER Brazil
Joanna LAWN New Zealand
Kate MURPHY Lower Plenty (VIC)
Maki NISHIUCHI Japan
Katja RABE Germany
Michelle VESTERBY Denmark
Inka WACHTER Germany
Dana WAGNER Germany

Wow! What an amazing field of pros. It’s very difficult to pick the winners here, but I’m going to give it a try.

First off I am wondering where the heck Mary Beth Ellis is, because I would most definitely picking her for a podium spot. Hopefully it is not an injury keeping her out of the race.

Conventional wisdom says that Mirinda Carfrae, and Caroline Steffen will be battling it out for top spot for the women.

However I am going to go with Rachel Joyce to have a huge race and take the win in this one. She had a sensational season in 2011 with a win in the Long Course Championships, a win in Ironman Lanzarote, a Second in Ironman South Africa, and a strong fourth-place finish in the Ironman Hawaii World Championships in Kona.

So my podium picks for the women….Rachel Joyce, Mirinda Carfrae, and Caroline Steffen in that order.

Picking the winners out of the stacked pro men’s field is just as challenging.

ironman melbourne poster

So who is going to win?


Again, conventional wisdom says that it will be Peter Jacobs squaring off against Craig Alexander for the win, but with Peter Jacobs out of the race that figures to be Eneko Llanos but I am going with Bart Aernouts to have the race of his life and steal the win in Melbourne.

Sure, call my crazy but Bart won 70.3 races in Antwerp, Syracuse, and the Pocono Mountains in 2011 and is ready for this. Yes, an Ironman is a lot different than a 70.3, but if Bart gauges his energy properly through the swim and bike he could have a great run split.

His run time in Syracuse was a blistering 1:13:18 so he has tons of speed.

My podium picks for the men…..Bart Aernouts, Eneko LlANOS , and Craig Alexander in that order.

We would love to hear who you think will win in Melbourne on Sunday March 25, 2012.

Enter your top three picks for the pro men and women below in the comments box and show the world your Ironman handicapping skills.

I will send anyone who picks the top three men AND the top three women in exact order signed copies of “Ironstruck…The Ironman Triathlon Journey, and also “Ironstruck? 500 Ironman Triathlon Questions and Answers”. (and also a third book of my choice as a bonus…just because.) Oh! and 2 very cool pairs of “Ironstruck” Defeet socks.

Looking forward to hearing from you. Just have your picks in our comments box before the gun goes off.

6 thoughts on “Ironman Melbourne 2012 Predictions

  1. Hi ray
    Pete Jacobs isn’t racing – he withdraw a couple of weeks ago.
    My predictions:
    Men’s:
    1. Craig alexander
    2. Eneko llanos
    3. Luke mckenzie

    Women’s:
    1. Mirinda carfrae
    2. Caroline steffen
    3. Rachel joyce

    • Thanks for the heads up Mike are absolutely right about Peter Jacobs and I completely forgot to change my picks, but have it sorted out now. As I said in the post, it’s not an official list as often there are those pros who are forced to withdraw for any number of reasons.

      So far it looks like all the other top pros are still competing. Your picks are excellent and they go with conventional wisdom of course. My pick to make some noise up front–Bart Aeronouts–may be more of a 70.3 specialist, but he has the speed to make the run interesting if he can stay close on the bike.

      Best of luck with your picks.

    • Solid picks as usual Tessa. I may have egg all over my face on this one, because if Craig is on his game he is virtually unbeatable. However an Ironman is a long ways and lots can happen over the course of 8 hours or so.

      Carfrae and Steffen are also solid picks and at times Leanda struggles in the late stages of the marathon. I just can’t shake the feeling that Rachel is going to be very tough in here.

      She was close all day in Kona and was a well-earned 4th and is ready for a break-through.

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