Everyone wants to know who will win KONA 2012.  Everyone also has their own favorites.  I am a fan of the dark horse.  Sometimes there is a dominate unhuman specimen such as Michael Phelps, that is just too hard to pick against.  I was right there when Craig Alexander flew by Chris Lieto at Vegas Worlds.  It seemed as though Chris and myself were walking when in reality we were at a 6:30 pace.  Craig “Crowy” did this all after having a flat on the bike and running his way back to win.  Everyone is getting so fast these days.  There are team tactics and everyone knows everyone’s strength and weaknesses.  Just like ITU, Ironman is coming down to a running race.  It will be no surprise when Chris Lieto comes off the bike in first but I think his margin will be much less than in the past.  Everyone else will just be trying to keep with the chase pack and the true runners will prevail.

It will be the same for the women.  Chrissie Wellington is obviously the favorite but I think she is a bit of a drama queen.  Evidently, she is  ecovering from a bike crash with some road rash but I think it’s all just a story to create drama.  Chrissie dropped out before she started last year and it seems like she psyches herself out a little bit at the big races.  Will she race this year?  I am sure her sponsors don’t want another race day DNF so yes she will race and she will do well.  Chrissie Wellington is a freak of nature.  She smashes most male professionals and I think the only way she will not win Kona this year is if she lets her injury get to her head and focuses on that rather than the mission to win.  Julie Dibens will most likely come off the bike first because she is a horse.  I love my girl “Dibs” but I know she has problems with her foot that caused her to DNF at Vegas.  I think this may come into play again on Saturday.

With all of this said, here are my predictions for KONA 2012.

Male Top 5

1.  Andres Raelert            Bib # 10

1.  Craig Alexander          Bib # 1

3.  Peter Jacobs                 Bib # 11

4.  Joe Gambles                 Bib # 38

5.  Timothy O’Donnell      Bib # 3



Female Top 5

1.  Chrissie Wellington    Bib # 102

2.  Caroline Steffan          Bib # 103

3.  Mary Beth Ellis           Bib #128

4.  Mirinda Carfrae          Bib # 101

5.  Karin Thuerig              Bib # 105