On Sunday 31st of August, 2014, Andrej Vistica, joined the start line at Challenge Vichy to defend his 2013 title.
Having had just two weeks to recover from one of the toughest triathlons in the world, the Embrunman Triathlon, teamTBB pro athlete, Vistica felt confident that he could successfully defend his title and so registered for Challenge Vichy.
Challenge Vichy is held in Central France just 3 hours from Paris during the French summer. Over 1,965 athletes were at the start line with Vistica, which consisted of a full ironman distance, half ironman distance as well as an olympic distnace race. Vistica this year was defending his last years win at the full ironman distance. The 3.8km swim is situated in the lac D'allier which is a spectacular swim with spectators near you at all times. The 180km bike course is flat with 2 small hills making it a very fast bike for both age groupers and pros alike. The run is is similar to the bike in that it is flat, it consists of 4 loops around the beautiful parks of Vichy and the city center. The entire course is great for beginners or for those looking to get a new PB.
Vistica started the race knowing that he would be the target to beat but this just made him determined to do the best he can.
Coming out of the swim Andrej found himself close to 5 minutes behind the leader. Andrej took advantage of the flat fast bike course gaining on the leader and so entering T2 in second place behind Jens Kaiser of Germany with less than a 2 minutes between them and with the second fastest bike split of the day.
The run turned out be a thriller, with Andrej giving 100%, trying hard to close the gap between him and Jens Kaiser. With less than 10km to go Andrej managed to pass Kaiser taking the lead and keeping it to the finish line, finishing in a time of 8:18:50, three minutes ahead of Jens. Jose Jeuland of France took third with a time of 8:44:28.
Andrej had this to say
It was much harder to defend Challenge Vichy title than to earn it first time. Last year no one expected I could win and everything felt so easy. This year I was favourite, so there was a bit of pressure and Jens Kaiser forced me to give 100% if I wanted to win again. The run was a thriller and it took me 33k to erase 1:07min deficit from T2. I needed the perfect race to beat Jens today and luckly I managed to pull it out.
Manager of teamTBB, Alex Bok on Andrej's succesful run of races these past few months
Andrej Vistica, the next generation of champions in the making.
While teamTBB coach Joseph Spindler had this to say
Not many athletes out there who can back up Embrunman with such a race only 2 weeks after. Very proud of him!!
Congratulations Andrej Vistica, we look forward to seeing what the future holds for you.