Yvonne Van Vlerken

Sport/discipline: Triathlon

About Yvonne: Yvonne was born and raised in the small Dutch village Krimpen a/d Lek near Rotterdam where she was working as a fitness-trainer, aerobic-instructor and sports masseuse for 13 years. Besides that, she got involved in endurance-sport and soon it was obvious that there was too much talent for keeping it as a hobby. It took not long until she found herself racing duathlons, becoming the fastest Dutch woman in that sport and traveling all around the Belgium, the Netherlands and Luxembourg collecting victories.

The highlight of her duathlon career came in 2006 when she took the Dutch Duathlon Championships, the ITU World Champion title and Powerman European Champion title in one season. In the same year she blasted on the triathlon scene with her ride at the 2006 Ironman® World Championship 70.3 in Clearwater where she was leading off the bike to take fifth later. The seven years of preparing for the turn-over to triathlon started to pay off. After the Clearwater-performance it was logical where her career would turn to: In July 2007n she raced her first Iron-distance and recorded the second fastest time ever to that day in 8:51:55 at the 2007 Quelle Challenge Roth. Soon after that her second sub-9 hour performance at the UPC Triathlon Almere/NED including one of the fastest ever female bike rides in 4:45:49 hours proved that her debut was not a lucky punch.

In fact, 2008 was the year for her to go for the world record that had been intact for 14 year and was held by Paula Newby-Fraser. On July 13th the record fell with the nmark of 8:45:48 (Yvonne rode on Zipp® 404 650c front wheel and the Zipp 840 disc wheel in rear). Yvonne approached her debut at the Ironman® World Championship in Hawaii with the goal to become "Rookie of the year." You could tell she did that in becoming the runner-up, posting the fastest female bike time of the day in extremely windy conditions in 5:05:34.

In 2009, Yvonne set a new World-Record on the Powerman-Duathlon-distance, took second at the Frankfurter Sparkasse Ironman European Championship, won Ironman 70.3 Germany with a course record and took the win at Ironman® Cozumel with a blistering time of 9:06 hours placing top 10 overall. Yvonne´s athletic accomplishments combined with her open character and approachable personality made her one of the most popular female athletes in triathlon.

Hometown: Krimpen a.d. Lek, The Netherlands

Current residence: Schwarzach, Austria

Hometown: Krimpen a.d. Lek, The Netherlands

Current residence: Schwarzach, Austria

SRAM® product used: SRAM RED groupset.

Zipp products uses: 404 front and disc 840 Rear (650c): this combination I rode in the miserable conditions at Quelle Challenge Roth 2008 when I broke the world record; Zipp 404 Rear (650c): in Ironman World Championship, Hawaii, and Ironman Cozumel;Vuka R2C carbon-shifters, and Service Course® SL stem.

Favorite SRAM product and why: SRAM RED crank because of its smooth feel and stiff character.

Favorite Zipp product and why: My 404 wheelset in 650c. I don't know of any more versatile wheel combination, from the Kona-World´s course to the steep climbs of the Ironman® 70.3 European Championship. They have always served me to the highest level.

You’re stranded on a desert island and you have to choose one of each of the following:

One album? Gossip – Music for Men

One candy? Dutch Pancakes

One vice? Lots of chocolate

Notable Race Results:

2011

1st Challenge Austria half

1st Challenge Kraichgau Half (course record)

3rd Ironman® 70.3 Austria

3rd Ironman® 70.3 New Orleans

2010

1st Ironman® Cozumel/Mex

1st Half-Challenge Austria-Walchsee/Aut (course record)

1st Ironman® 70.3 EUROPEAN CHAMPION Wiesbaden/Ger (course record)

2nd ITU LD World Championship Immenstadt/Ger

2nd Ironman® 70.3 Austria (course record)

2009

1st IRONMAN® Cozumel/Mex (course-record)

1st IRONMAN® 70.3 Wiesbaden/GER (course-record)

1st EUROPEAN CHAMPION Powerman Duathlon Horst/NED (2:57:25, world record)

2008

2nd IRONMAN® WORLD CHAMPIONSHIP Hawaii, Kailua-Kona-HI/USA

2nd CHALLENGE Roth/GER (8:45:48, 4th fastest female time in history on Iron-distance & World Record from July 2008-09)

1st IRONMAN® 70.3 Austria/AUT (course-record)

2007

1st IRON-distance Triathlon Almere/NED (8:57:54)

2nd IRONMAN® 70.3 Antwerpen/BEL

1st CHALLENGE ROTH/GER (8:51:55)

2006

1st IRONMAN® 70.3 Antwerpen/BEL (world-record from 2006-07)

1st ITU LD-DUATHLON WORLD CHAMPION Duathlon Fredericia/DEN

1st EUROPEAN CHAMPION Powerman Duathlon Horst/NED

3 Sub-Nine Iron-Distance races (8:45:48, 8:51:55, 8:57:54)

Website: www.yvonnevanvlerken.eu

Facebook: www.facebook.com/YvonnevanVlerken.The.flying.blonde.Dutchgirl

Twitter: @yvonnevvlerken

Photo: Endurance Team/enduranceteam.at