Don scores Cup goal with Des Moines gold

Garmin kit-sponsored triathlete Tim Don has achieved a career goal by winning the much-coveted Hy-Vee Elite Cup in Des Moines, Idaho, USA. Besides the $200,000 prize money up for grabs, the race has the attraction of seeing some of the top names in the sport square up to the challenge.

Winner cheque

Don, who made the decision to leave his established support team to coach himself, was elated to answer what he dubbed his “Judgement day”. He says in his post-victory blog: “I was judge, jury and executioner as it was me who I would have to answer to.”

Sixty six men started the race, with Russian powerhouse duo Alexander Brukhankov and Dmitry Polvansky strong in the water. Polvansky took the stage from Canada’s Andrew McCartney ahead of a close-packed following field of fifty swimmers..

The bike stage saw the group hold tight together, with Tim Don and New Zealand’s Kris Gemmell first to make it onto the run.

Tim says: “The bike course is just a straight out and back with a cheeky bit into and out of transition, with an amazing grandstand full of crazy people cheering, it was great.”

Tim had rightly predicted the real battle to be on foot, and he went into the duel with a single-minded determination that saw him build a 20-second gap over Germany’s Jan Frodeno. He explains: “I had decided to go out hard and set an honest pace for the first lap then settle down and wait for a sprint… well, I was on my own after two km and very much like ‘06 Worlds, when you get a gap on an Olympic Champ, you got go for it.”

The chase pack eventually overwhelmed Frodeno, with Gemmell breaking off to battle Don down to the finish line. Tim took the title with a time of 1:50:20, holding Gemmell in silver, with Australian Courtney Atkinson taking third.

Hy-Vee web 

With a taste for gold and victory still ringing in his ears, it’s clear Tim’s got his eye trained on the sport’s top prizes. He says: “It was an amazing feeling but all I can think about is what I can do to improve and what I can learn from myself and my fellow competitors. I liked that race and now I’m hungry for more.”

Tim uploaded his bike course race data from the day to our online training community Garmin Connect, to review, relive and replay his performance.

Tim Don next competes in the Hyde Park World Championship Series on 25 July and the London Triathlon on 8 August.