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Butterfield thirteenth at championships

Preparing for Hawaii: Butterfield would have been reasonably happy with his performance in Mooloolaba - his final race before Kona

Tyler Butterfield produced a strong performance to finish just outside the top ten at the Ironman 70.3 World Championships in Mooloolaba, Queensland, yesterday.

Butterfield came thirteenth in a time of 3hr 49min 56sec in an exceptionally strong field, including some of the best long-course professionals in the world.

He finished the 1.9 kilometres swim in 22:57, the 90km bike in 2:05:55 and 21.1km run in 1:16:59

Tim Reed, of Australia, won the race in 3:44:14 just two seconds ahead of favourite and two-times winner Sebastian Kienle, of Germany. Ruedi Wild, of Switzerland, placed third in 3:44:40. The pair swapped the lead on several occasions during the final segment of the race.

“Fun day racing at #70.3 Worlds today,” Butterfield tweeted. “But huge congrats to @Timboreeed on grabbing the World title!”

Butterfield’s swim put him among the lead group of about 15 riders with the Bermudian leading going into the run before fading quickly.

The 33-year-old, who won his first 70.3 at Timberman in the White Mountains in New Hampshire, last month, will now return to Boulder to prepare for the Ironman World Championships in Hawaii, Kona, on October 8.

He produced the greatest performance of his career in last year’s race with a sensational fifth-place finish, beating his previous best of seventh in 2013.

Also competing at the championships was Ashley Estwanik and Allison Schindel Petty in the women’s 35-39 age group, as well as Phil Mace and Neil Lupsic in the men’s 40-44 age category.

All four triathletes qualified for the competition earlier this year.

Estwanik, the cousin of Butterfield, finished an impressive thirteenth in 5:02:50, while Schindel Petty, who suffered a flat tyre one mile into the bike, was 109th in 6:02:48.

Lupsic came 68th in his age group in 4:41:37, with Mace just 22 seconds behind to place 70th.