Ironman Eagleman 70.3: Dead Heat? WTC and USA Triathlon CEOs Compete; Who Won?

The CEOs of top triathlon organizations -- WTC and USA Triathlon -- squared off at this year's Ironman Eagleman 70.3 triathlon, which ranks among the tougher 70.3 events in the world.

While WTC and USA Triathlon have not always been on friendly terms, Andrew Messick (WTC CEO) and Rob Urbach (USA Triathlon CEO) seemed to put aside any differences, sharing the last 6 miles together to finish with an identical time of 5:41:10 (For those keeping track, that's close to two hours slower than Lance Armstrong's recent race results)

Up until the time they met on the run course, however, each competed to deliver the best splits possible. So, how did Messick and Urbach compare during the rest of the race?
  • Swim: Urbach's the better swimmer, about 20% faster than Messick, covering 1.2 miles in a 30:27 swim split
  • Bike: Advantage Messick, riding 56 miles at 20.77mph, passing Urbach (19.63 mph) mid-course, and entering T2 with a 4 minute advantage
  • Run: Urbach battled back with a much better run over the first 6.6 miles, gaining 4 minutes to pull even with Messick
  • Finish: In the spirit of cooperation and good sportsmanship that are hallmarks of competitive triathlon, both Messick and Urbach ran the last 6 or so miles together, finishing with identical 5:41:10 times
  • Who won? Technically, using chip time, Messick finished 722nd overall, Urbach 723rd. But that may not be the actual result
  • Why? Just a day earlier, in what was determined to be a dead heat --two males tied for the victory at Ironman Boise -- Messick noted in a tweet that chip time does not determine a race winner; it's whoever's torso crosses the line first that gets the victory.

So, between Messick and Urbach, whose torso crossed the line at Eagleman first? We'll need to look at the photo finish. Until then, here's a comparison of Messick's and Urbach's performance at Ironman Eagleman 70.3. For more, see: