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Raghul Ironman at Ironman South Africa

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Raghul Ironman at Ironman South Africa

A non-athlete turned professional athlete, Raghul Sankaranarayanan, has truly earned the title of Raghul Ironman. His most recent Ironman, The Standard Bank Ironman African Championship held in South Africa earlier this year, saw Raghul emerge India’s fastest Ironman Triathlete.   

Surprisingly, Raghul was never into sports until college where a 3km run was made compulsory by the Institution. This was perhaps the starting point of his incredible journey as an athlete. Following this, he moved on to becoming an avid trekker and finally a triathlete. In 2014, Raghul was officially recognized as an ‘Ironman’ after completing his first official Ironman Championship in Malaysia with a sub 15-hour timing. 

Raghul Ironman at Ironman South Africa-1
Raghul Ironman at Ironman South Africa Training

Prior to his big race, Raghul travelled to Johannesburg to train in South Africa with his coach Lucie Zalenkova and his team Trifactri. His training schedule involved a combination of running, cycling and swimming – to prepare for the championship.  

Race day was not all smooth sailing for this Chennai-based athlete. He completed the 3.8km swim in 1 hour and 17 minutes, taking a minute more than his best. Following the 3.8 km swim was 180kms of cycling. About 25 kilometres into his ride, a mechanical issue on the arm pad of his aero-bars compromised his aero-position, forcing him to tackle a windy day in an upright riding position. With the pressure of riding upright, Raghul strained his hamstring which slowed him down to a point dropping out was recommended by the officials. Bracing the discomfort and strong winds that day, Raghul carried on and completed the 42.2km run. Despite these setbacks, Raghul finished the championship with a total timing of 10 hours and 57 minutes, breaking the Indian Record of 11 hours and 5 minutes, making him the fastest Indian Ironman Triathlete.  

Raghul Ironman at Ironman South Africa Result

Raghul had a tough race in South Africa and weathered the tough conditions and Mechanical issues to earn the title "India's Fastest Triathlete".Next up for Raghul Ironman is either the Ironman Canada or Ironman China later on in the year for which he has already started training.

About Raghul Ironman:

Raghul is a CMB Pro Athlete and is the Head Coach at Tri Crash 'n' Burn. A 5-time Ironman, who has coached more than a 100 athletes in the last 3 years. 


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