11th Oct 2019
Birkirkara St. Joseph Sports Club triathlete Rudolph Agius put his name down on the sport’s history books earlier on this week following a triumphant performance at Ironman Triathlon in Barcelona.
The single-lap, 3,800 metre swim in the warm waters of the Mediterranean Sea featured a rolling start, beginning and ending on the beach of Calella. The bike course was aimed towards having a very flat and fast race, whilst the 42.2 km run from Calella to Calella-Santa Susanna follows the Mediterranean Sea on a flattish route.
Agius, who has been focusing on long distance triathlon and has a substantial number of Ironman races under his belt produced his best ever performance on this distance, registering a swim time of 55 minutes 18 seconds, a bike time of 4 hours 48 minutes 30 seconds and an impressive marathon time of 3 hours 11 minutes 27 seconds. His overall time was 9 hours and 53 seconds. Agius paced 5th in his Age Group which saw 566 athletes complete the race.
This time meant that Agius smashed the current National Long Distance Triathlon Record as well as securing a coveted place in the 2020 World Championships held in Kailua-Kona, Hawai`i.
Agius’ qualification for Kona was the second for him, and is the only local athlete to have qualified multiple times for the World Championships.
“Barcelona provided the perfect racing conditions which were backed by months of detailed and committed preparation. Qualifying for Kona is every triathlete’s dream. Having achieved this dream twice, is something more than words could ever describe” enthused Agius after the race. “Of course this would not have been possible without the support of my family, my club – Birkirkara St. Joseph Sports Club as well as entities who have shown their support – namely, Attard Bros Group, Big Mat Malta, Garmin Malta, Nectar Group, Pfanner and Scott Bike, The Cyclist.”
In a short statement, Birkirkara St. Joseph Sports Club Secretary General Euchar Camilleri expressed his satisfaction at the result and noted that this was the third time the Club was represented at the Ironman World Championships, the first time being in 2013 when former National Champion and Club member Dermot Galea flew the Maltese and Club flag in Hawai’i.