Alberts earns first career pro Ironman win

Alice Alberts raises the Ironman Lake Placid banner after crossing the finish line on the Olympic Speed Skating Oval on Sunday, July 23. (News photo — Parker O'Brien)

LAKE PLACID — Last year, Alice Alberts decided to take on Ironman Lake Placid for her first career 140.6-mile triathlon since becoming a professional triathlete. However, it didn’t go as well as she had hoped.

“I blew up on the run after butchering my nutrition on the bike,” she said.

Alberts finished in 70th place overall and 11th among professional women’s athletes last year.

But on Sunday, Alberts returned to Lake Placid and not only recorded her first career Ironman win since turning pro; she also earned her first-ever professional podium finish.

“This was redemption, and I’m thrilled,” she said. “I’m in disbelief. My hard work has paid off.”

The Boston resident finished the course in 9 hours, 16 minutes, 1 second, which was more than an hour faster than her time last year of 10:28:32.

“I felt stronger, I felt more confident (than last year),” Alberts said. “My training has been going well, and I think that proved itself today.”

Erin Snelgrove finished in second place with a time of 9:21:49 while fellow Canadian Jen Annett rounded out the podium in third at 9:27:35. Snelgrove also marked her first-ever podium finish.

With more than 1,800 athletes converging into Mirror Lake at the start of Sunday’s triathlon, Alberts proved right away that she was in it to win it. She tied with Rachel McBride for the fastest swim time among professional women’s athletes. They both finished the 2.4-mile swim at 1:00:12.

McBride, however, took a slight advantage after having a quicker bike transition. Shortly after, Alberts caught McBride on the bike course and held the top spot until the very end of the race. She finished the 112-mile bike ride in a time of 5:03:41.

“I think leading the bike gave me that confidence going into the run,” Alberts said.

With just about a one-minute lead over the next closest women’s competitor on the full 26.2-mile marathon, Alberts kicked it into high gear. She completed the run in a time of 3:06:29 while dealing with a downpour for a bit, which didn’t seem to affect her.

“I’m the kind of runner who douses myself at every aid station, so that was like a nice cool-down,” Alberts said. “I wanted it to rain the entire run, to be honest.”

When Alberts crossed the finish line on the Olympic Speed Skating Oval, her family stood off to the side, cheering for her. Her husband, however, stood right by the finish alongside media and volunteers, waiting for her to finish.

“I wouldn’t want it any other way. I also had family watching on the internet, too. It was amazing to have my husband there for a post-finish line kiss.”

Following the race, Alberts didn’t have an answer if she’d come back to compete in next year’s Ironman Lake Placid.

“I mean, I’ll probably have to,” she said.

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