Switzerland Ironman Training Information


Training for Ironman Switzerland and the road to Kona.

There are usually 71 qualifying slots for the Hawaii Ironman World championships for age group and pro triathletes.
Check the web site for more details about the slots available and course, always go to the race briefing.

Patience triathletes do well here as they hold back on the up hills.

Expect a range of temperatures but usually it is very hot but cooler in the mountains with a chance of rain.

Want a difficult Ironman up hill or breath taking exciting fast technical descents then this event is for you. If you have good bike skills you can make up a lot of time on the fast twisty down hills.
The following information is from Dave Brown past Ironman France finisher & Mark Kleanthous, provided to help you have a successful Ironman.
Temperatures usually average 74-89 degrees.
Past Male winners: 

Oliver Bernard 2002 – 8:33 & again in 2003 8:27 and again 2004 8:16 2005  Mauch Christoph  8:21 Olivier Bernard 2nd 8:29 2006  Stefan Riesen 8:16
2007 Ronnie Schidknecht 8:25 2008 Ronnie Schidknecht 8:16

Past Female winners: 2004 Yvonne Kromker 9:31 2006 Rebecca Preston 9:24
2007 Rebecca Preston 9:20 - 2008 Sibylle Matter 9:30

SWIM – Starts on the beach on the edge of Lake Zurich into the clean clear lake. A pleasant temperature of 70 degrees with wetsuits allowed up to 75 degrees.
Two lap square coming back around the Island and under a bridge great for spectators to cheer and keep track of all the Ironman action.
Use tinted goggles are required on a sunny morning.

BIKE – Unbelievable bike ride climbing away from lake Zurich and you will be amazed how much you have climbed with the lake in the distance. 3 lap course going up Heartbreak hill that takes around 2-3 minutes with huge spectator support as it is not far from the finish and transition area. The other notable hill is the Beast gear ratio is 39/26 so you save your legs avoid using strength needed for the flat run.
Gently climbs that can sap your energy ride up then steady keeping just below your red line.

RUN – 4 lap run along Lake Zurich on flat hot tarmac with some shade under the trees. Good support from the knowledgeable helpers at the feed stations.

Ironman Switzerland Training Tip –
Temperatures range form 76- 86 degrees if it does not rain it can be a hot marathon so prepare and consider covering your shoulders.
Flat easy hard riding then add climbs of 5 -10- 15- 15 minutes with longer recoveries and little spinning to stimulate the fast down hills due to the bends you will not be able to spin those legs.
Lots of hill repeats of 4-8 minutes and hilly time trails of 20-50km in last 10 weeks will prepare you for this Ironman bike section.
Finish area is filled by spectators after the swimmer have finished due to being able to see triathletes during each bike leg then again on the marathon.
If it rains a bridge over the road is a great place to stay dry and watch the athlete’s bike and run.
Food and drink can be obtained from the exhibition but you may lose your viewing spot when you return.

Mark Kleanthous has completed the Switzerland Ironman August 2000
Swim 1:01 Bike 5:30 Run 3:56 total time 10:38 40-45 age group 46th -353rd overall. & also

June 2007 swim 1:08 Bike 5:36 Run 3:44 total time 10:32 45-49 age group 23rd -329th overall.