The duel between generations for the Roth crown / Exciting record-breaking racing on order / Announcement of the women's field on Thursday
The signal for the greatest race in Roth history is on green. The best athletes in the world will once again compete at DATEV Challenge Roth powered by hep 2023. Leading the men's field, previous years’ winners will meet the young guns of the sport.
A furious race is in the offing
Magnus Elbæk Ditlev has already shown what he is capable of at a young age. With an exceptional performance, the 25-year-old left all competitors behind at last year's DATEV Challenge Roth powered by hep and will line up in 2023 as the defending champion. Ditlev missed Jan Frodeno's course record by just nine seconds and he is currently ranked third in the Professional Triathletes Organisation world ranking.
One of the big German favourites for victory in the Roth triathlon mecca is undoubtedly Patrick Lange after winning at his Roth debut in 2021. At the last edition of DATEV Challenge Roth powered by hep, the two-time Hawaii winner finished second behind Ditlev. Lange proved the 36-year-old is in peak form at IM Israel in November where he set an impressive marathon record of 2:30.
Is the young guard taking over triathlon?
At the age of 24, Frenchman Sam Laidlow is still at the beginning of his triathlon career. He caused a sensation at in Hawaii in 2022 and was crowned a surprise world runner-up - with the second-fastest time in the history of Hawaii to boot. With 4:04:36 he even set an all-time bike course record, something he can also be relied on to do on the fast and fan-lined course in Roth.
Hep-Sportsteam athlete, Daniel Bækkegård, will also be a force to be reckoned with in Roth. He is travelling to Franconia for the first time with a personal best of 7:43:40. At 26 years old and only two years older than Laidlow, the Dane has collected prestigious trophies, especially over the middle distance. He is the reigning IM 70.3 European Champion and finished third at the 70.3 World Championships. In the PTO Collins Cup, he won in Šamorín with Team Europe in 2021.
Old friends in Roth with top chances
Only about 30km from his home in Nuremberg, Andi Dreitz can once again ensure a top Franconian ranking. His triumph at his home race in Roth 2019 will never be forgotten and in this, his fifth time at DATEV Challenge Roth powered by hep, another top ranking is possible.
The same applies to Joe Skipper. The Brit has caused quite a stir on the triathlon circuit after his two second places in Roth in 2016 and 2017. With a total of seven Ironman titles and several course records, the 34-year-old is one of the most successful triathletes of recent years. His personal best of 7:41:07 gives an idea of what Skipper is capable of in top form in Roth.
In 2015, Nils Frommhold stood at the top of the podium and was able to record his greatest career success at the time, taking the German Championship title in Roth. The 36-year-old Berliner from the Erdinger Active Team has already stood on every step of the Roth podium, finishing second behind Patrick Lange in his last appearance in 2021. Frommhold certainly wouldn't mind another podium finish in 2023.
First American winner in Roth?
A candidate for a first US men's victory in Roth in 2023 is Ben Kanute. He has celebrated his greatest successes so far in the middle distance and was runner-up at the IM 70.3 World Championships in October. In his first start over the 3.8 km swim, 180 km bike and 42.2 km run, he finished third at IM Arizona in a time of 7:51:2.
Farewell to a world career
Sebastian Kienle has come full circle. The crowd favourite announced his retirement from professional triathlon many months ago. His long-distance career began in Roth in 2010. After the Hawaii victory in 2014, the victory at the IM 70.3 World Championship in 2012, the Roth victory in 2018 and countless other titles, Sebi will celebrate the farewell of his glorious professional career on 25 June 2023 at his last long-distance race in Germany. What more fitting setting for this than a start in the place that creates goosebumps?
Predicting unpredictability in the top field
There has never been so much quality across the board in a Roth professional field. Further evidence is the young Frenchman, Clément Mignon, who is making his Roth debut. As a 23-year-old, he delivered a compelling race in Hawaii last October, similar to Sam Laidlow, and finished ninth in his second long-distance race. In the heat of Hawaii, he finished well under the magic eight-hour mark with a time of 7:56:58.
Bradley Weiss could also be a candidate for the podium in Roth. Last year, the South African missed the podium by only 80 seconds and finished fourth. Another prominent name on the start list is Reece Barclay. In 2022, he crossed the finish line in Roth overjoyed in 16th place after a difficult year.
Equal appreciation of the women’s field
All triathlon fans should definitely mark 25 June 2023 in bold in their calendars. To give due recognition to both the men's and women's field, TEAMCHALLENGE will announce the women's field on a separate day. The publication of the world-class women's start list will take place on Thursday, 9 February on the DATEV Challenge Roth powered by hep channels. This year, Challenge Roth celebrates 10 years of partnership with title sponsor DATEV.
The men's elite at the DATEV Challenge Roth powered by hep 2023 at a glance:
- Magnus Ditlev
- Patrick Lange
- Sam Laidlow
- Sebastian Kienle
- Daniel Baekkegard
- Andreas Dreitz
- Joe Skipper
- Ben Canute
- Nils Frommhold
- Clement Mignon
- Bradley Weiss
- Reece Barclay
- Victor Arroyo
- Silas Köhn
- Simon Billeau
- Erik-Simon Strijk
- Jason Pohl
- Andrew Horsfall-Turner
- Hannes Wolpert
- Jesse Vondracek
- Markus Thomschke
- Jean-Claude Besse
- Nicolas Quenette
- Alberto Casillas