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Bart Aernouts takes Ironman 70.3 Dubai title

Team On’s Belgian bullet triathlete entered the race with low expectations. Then crushed it.


Bart Aernout’s 2020 season is off to a flying start with a victory at Ironman 70.3 Dubai in the United Arab Emirates on February 6, 2020. 


The 2018 Ironman World Championships runner-up crushed the half Iron-distance course, and competition. Bart completed the 1.2-mile (1.9 km) swim, 56-mile (90 km) bike ride, and 13.1-mile (21.1 km) run in 3:33:45, finishing with a 1:10:54 half marathon.  


The win comes less that two weeks after Bart narrowly missed the podium at Ironman 70.3 South Africa, finishing 4th. That race was won by fellow On athlete Matt Trautman, who finished 5th in Dubai. 


While his winning performance looked like business as usual to those of us who’ve seen Bart compete, it apparently came as a surprise to the man himself. 


“I didn’t have very high expectations for this race as it’s still very early in the season and 12 days ago in South Africa I didn’t feel very powerful and strong. But somehow the races in the Middle East suit me very well. 


“The swim was average but I felt very strong on the bike and run today. My plan was to ride as fast as possible and to see afterwards what I had left for the run. In the run I took my time to find my rhythm but felt very good.”


So where will this winning form take Bart next? 


“I now go to South Africa for a training block and then 70.3 Oceanside (in California, US) and Ironman St. George (in Utah, US) will be next big goals.”


Watch this space for more on Bart’s progress to another shot at the Ironman World Championships in Kona, and updates from all On athletes. 


Discover the mindset that has brought Bart to the top of his sport in the short documentary Ironmind

Bart’s shoe: The Cloudflow
Bart: “I really like the cushioning and stability of this shoe. I was actually racing with my the shoes I wore at 2019 World Champs in Kona.”
Discover the details

Photo credit: J.Mitchell / ActivImages

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