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Michael Raelert with Stefano Cattai from BMC
Michael Raelert with Stefano Cattai from BMC

Michael Raelert comes second in Ironman 70.3 in Miami

3. November 2011

Just a week after his sensational comeback, in itself already a huge relief following several months out due to injury, Raelert was outdone only by his compatriot Sebastian Kienle in Miami.

Blow by blow, instead of step by step

Bystanders will inevitably get the impression that Michael Raelert is somehow trying to make up for all that he has missed out on after such an unfortunate season. They could be forgiven for forming such an impression, because the succession of announcements that he was having to pull out of competitions being vaunted as the season's highlight were painful both for Michael himself and his audience. Once again there is no stopping the younger Raelert brother. Ambition has got the better of him even if, after having to take a break of this length from competition due to injury, you might think he would want to resume competing more gradually. But the determined athlete from Rostock clearly believes in himself, with two starts over half ironman distances within the space of a week. If his results are anything to go by, there can be no doubting his physical fitness.

A "superbiker" beats the Dominator

In Miami, only the strong cyclist Sebastian Kienle got the better of Raelert, ultimately beating him by about one minute. Although second place is a very respectable performance, Raelert was anything but satisfied with his performance immediately after crossing the finishing line. "I'm not disappointed at coming second, don't get me wrong! But I'm totally disappointed with my performance. I'd already given up on the competition in the swim leg and the whole time I found I was looking for excuses not to have to pull out." But looking at his performance stage by stage, it was anything but poor: after getting out of the water along with the first big group, he turned in a good performance on the cycle leg. Only Kienle, who rode the 90 kilometers about 5 minutes faster than Raelert, was noticeably stronger. The fastest run split of the day was not enough for the Rostock athlete to make up the ground on his rival, who ran a respectable half-marathon to keep Raelert at arm's length.

Back on track

With two surprisingly strong performances in Austin and Miami, the younger Raelert has shown he is once again a force to be reckoned with. Even if he may take some time to regain his former dominance over the Ironman 70.3 distance, it seems to take Michael Raelert just a small step to get a huge leap ahead of the rest.