CTS Athlete Craig Alexander Wins 2008 Ford Ironman World Championship

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Colorado Springs, CO – In only his second time racing the Ford Ironman World Championships in Kona, Hawaii, Australian CTS Athlete Craig Alexander dominated the race, winning in a time of 8:17:45 – a full 3:05 in front of second place competitor Eneko Llanos.

Alexander, a former Ironman 70.3 World Champion, finished second in the Ironman World Championships in 2007 and worked diligently with his Carmichael Training Systems Coach, Nick White, and under the supervision of CTS Founder, Chris Carmichael, throughout the winter and the 2008 season.

“This is a dream come true. You can’t win this race without tremendous support from others, and Nick and Chris both prepared me get to the line first. I cannot thank them enough,” said Alexander after the race.


Alexander signed on as a CTS Athlete in August of 2007, just 10 weeks before racing the Ironman World Championships for the first time. Following his strong second-place finish, he and his CTS Coaches were confident that another year of focused training could deliver Alexander to Kona with the fitness and tools necessary to win. Along with proven training and nutrition methodologies, aerodynamic testing was an important component of improving Alexander’s performance. Modeled after the successful F1 Team built to optimize Lance Armstrong’s time trial performances, CTS brought together a team of coaches, equipment sponsors, and aerodynamics experts and optimized Alexander’s cycling position and equipment choices in the A2 Wind Tunnel in Mooresville, North Carolina in June 2008.

“Craig’s cycling position was pretty good to start with, but we were able to further reduce his aerodynamic drag numbers while making him more comfortable on the bike,” said CTS Coach Nick White. “The primary goal was to help Craig conserve energy on the bike so he was fresher for the run. In Kona he was conservative on the bike and ran a great marathon to win the race. That’s exactly the scenario we planned for.”

“Craig’s victory in Kona is a great reward for all his hard work. He had confidence in his coach, Nick White, and his program, and was completely prepared to perform at his best,” said CTS Founder Chris Carmichael, who coaches Lance Armstrong and in 2000 became the only man to coach a Tour de France winner [Armstrong] and an Ironman World Champion [Peter Reid] in the same year. “Craig’s success further demonstrates that, year after year, CTS-coached athletes continue to win the world’s biggest competitions. Whether it’s the Ironman World Championship, the Tour de France, gold medals at the Paralympics, victories in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series, or countless local, national, and international age-group victories; CTS Athletes consistently stand atop podiums and meet and exceed their personal goals.”

Craig Alexander was only one of more than a dozen CTS Athletes who competed at the 2008 Ford Ironman World Championships. Highlights from these athletes include:

>> Tim Hola: The first American amateur to finish, Tim placed fourth in the ultra-competitive Men 30-34 age group. In September the father of two-year-old twins was also featured as one of Outside Magazine’s “Fittest Real Men in America”.

  • Michael Hagen: A CTS Coach and father of two, Mike finished second in the Men 45-49 age group.
  • Chrissy Steigerwald: Chrissy raced to fifth place in the Women’s 35-39 age group.
  • Rodger Bivens: The oldest CTS Athlete in the race, Rodger finished 20th in the 65-69 age group.

Complete list of CTS Athlete Results from the 2008 Ford Ironman World Championships

About the author: Thien Dinh

Thien Dinh gained most his cycling knowledge the old fashioned way, by immersing himself in the sport. From 2007 to early 2013, Thien served as RoadBikeReview Site Manager, riding daily while putting various cycling products through its paces. A native of California, Thien also enjoys tinkering with photography and discovering new music.


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