It has been only seven weeks since Austrian triathlon pro, Michael Weiss, finished 16th overall in Hawaii at the Ironman World Championships.
On Sunday he will face the scorching heat, strong winds, and infamous distance once again in Ironman Cozumel – this time as a 2x returning Champion hoping to put a hat-trick together with the perfect mix of speed, strategy, will-power, and a touch of luck!
Michael has found ideal training conditions on the mostly undeveloped island of Cozumel in the Caribbean Sea. He stayed at El Cozumeleño in September this year as part of his Kona-prep – a convenient and athlete-friendly beach resort which also hosted him during his last two Cozumel victories.
"I find the conditions perfect here in Cozumel,” Weiss comments. "I can fully concentrate on my training and have worked through a variety of conditions over the last week. I feel motivated and prepared for Sunday. I know every meter on this island now and every direction the wind can blow…"
Michael has trained in a variety of locations this fall. Following his time in Kailua-Kona, Michael spent four weeks on altitude in Colorado before returning to Cozumel in mid-November. The hotel, El Cozumeleño, welcomed him back with a massive wall mural of Weiss in action on his Falco time trial bike.
On Sunday a very competitive men’s field will take the start. Tyler Butterfield of Bermuda is a strong challenger as well as Italian, Alessandro Degasperi, and many other well-known professionals from the USA, Australia, and South America. All will fight to be "King of Cozumel” in the 2.4 mile swim, 112 mile bike and 26.2 mile marathon run. No piece of cake for sure!
Michael, with start number 1, remarks on race previews: “Many say I'm the “hunted” here at Ironman Cozumel, but actually, I’m sure I will come from behind after the swim. I will be on my Falco V working hard to catch the leaders and I’m really looking forward to it. I’m hunting the hat-trick.”
Hat-trick (noun): three successes of the same kind, especially consecutive ones.