WESTLAKE VILLAGE, Calif., Oct. 11 /PRNewswire/ -- Iconic California Sport footwear and apparel brand K-Swiss is thrilled to congratulate Mirinda Carfrae, Andreas Raelert and Julie Dibens on their respective first, second and third place performances in K-Swiss footwear and apparel at the 32nd Ford Ironman World Championship in Kailua-Kona, Hawaii on Saturday, October 9th. K-Swiss also represented the first American to cross the finish: Ironman veteran Chris Lieto.
Australian Mirinda Carfrae dominated the women's field, setting the fourth-fastest women's time ever in Kona, to claim her first Ironman World Champion title. Carfrae, who was runner-up last year, crossed the finish in 8:58:36 with an incredible run time of 2:53, the fastest marathon run by a woman in Kona history. Carfrae raced in the K-Swiss K-Ruuz™, a super-light racing flat.
In a tight race to the men's finish, Germany's Andreas Raelert closed a three-minute gap to run shoulder-to-shoulder with eventual champion Chris McCormack only falling behind in the final mile. With a marathon time of 2:44:25, less than a minute separated Raelert from first place. The current Ironman European Champion Raelert finished with a final time of 8:12:17. This is his second appearance at the World Championships racing in the K-Swiss K-Ruuz. He rounded out the top three last year.
Trek/ K-Swiss athlete Julie Dibens of Great Britain earned a podium finish in her first-ever Ironman race with 9:10:04. Dibens, the current Ironman World Championship 70.3 Champion, maintained the lead throughout the 112-mile bike course with the fastest-split in the top three at 4:55:28 but fell short during the marathon to friend and teammate Carfrae's record-breaking pace. Dibens chose to race in the new K-Swiss Blade-Light™ Run, one of the lightest (at 9.3oz) neutral-cushioned training shoes on the market engineered for high mileage efficient running. The shoe features an ultra-light cushioning technology that provides impact protection through a series of 'blades' aligned to the angle of impact. The blades collapse and compress in proportion to the forces applied through the running gait. After impact, the blades return to their original shape and provide a 'springy' feel.
Ironman veteran Chris Lieto was the first American to cross the finish in 8:25:51 for 11th place. Lieto had the best bike-split of the day with 4:23:17 and led the marathon until Mile 14. Lieto raced in the new K-Swiss Kwicky Blade-Light, a shoe that will launch in spring 2011. The 9oz running shoe features the brand's first-time use of the state-of-the-art SeamFree™ and Ion Mask™ upper technologies that eliminate stitching and provide liquid repellency that old technologies simply cannot match keeping the shoe light, dry and clean for the life of the shoe.
This is the second year that K-Swiss is the official apparel and footwear sponsor of Ironman. With its high-profile roster of professional triathletes, K-Swiss has seen significant growth in awareness and on-site sales. K-Swiss now ranks fourth in shoe count at Kona, leaping over longtime running brands Brooks, Adidas, New Balance, Mizuno, and Nike.
To learn more about K-Swiss triathletes, the Blade-Light series and the full range of K-Swiss performance running footwear and apparel, visit www.kswiss.com. The Ford Ironman World Championship broadcast will air on NBC on Dec. 18, 2010, from 4 – 6 p.m.
Founded more than forty years ago in Van Nuys, California, K-Swiss (Nasdaq: KSWS) introduced the first all-leather tennis shoe, the K-Swiss "Classic" in 1966. Since its inception, K-Swiss has rooted itself in California Sport with an aim to be the most inspiring and innovative sports brand in the market. Today the company offers performance and lifestyle footwear and apparel for several categories under its California Sports umbrella including Tennis Heritage, California Fit (Running, Triathlon and Fitness) and California Youth. K-Swiss also designs, develops and markets footwear under the Palladium brand, and owns the FORM Athletics brand. For more information about K-Swiss, visit www.kswiss.com.