Danielle Dingman (USA) and Debuting Professional Matt Mcwilliams (USA) Take Titles in The HOKA ONE ONE IRONMAN VR17 Pro Challenge

August 1, 2020

- Over 8,000 athletes from 108 nations registered to compete in three division format for IRONMAN VR17 - More than 1,000 age-group athletes registered to compete in the final race of the four-week long HOKA ONE ONE IRONMAN Virtual Racing Championship Series - More than 113,000 people from around the globe have now joined IRONMAN Virtual Club platform

TAMPA, Fla. (Aug. 1, 2020) – Danielle Dingman of Boise, Idaho and Matt McWilliams of Boulder, Colo. completed an American sweep in the professional women’s and men’s races, respectively during the 17th edition of the HOKA ONE ONE IRONMAN® VR™ Pro Challenge. This weekend’s race positioned eight professional athletes from around the world in a head-to-head 500m swim at locations in their home communities, before taking on a 40km ride on a portion of the IRONMAN 70.3 Santa Cruz bike course, utilizing Official Virtual Cycling partner ROUVY’s augmented reality. The athletes finished off the virtual race with a 3km run recorded at multiple training locations showcasing the three disciplines of the virtual triathlon on the HOKA ONE ONE IRONMAN VR Pro Challenge broadcast.

On Friday, the professional men battled it out with Matt McWilliams, a three-time IRONMAN 70.3 overall age-group champion, topping the podium in his debut professional race clocking an overall time of 1:08:33. Thomas Davis (GBR), a multi-time top-10 IRONMAN 70.3 finisher followed in second, finishing the swim, bike and run in a time of 1:09:23.  Santiago Ascenco (BRA), one of the top performers across the IRONMAN 70.3 circuit, finished in third place with a combined time of 1:10:10. The 2017 IRONMAN Taiwan champion, Kevin Collington (USA) rounded out the group in fourth with an overall finishing time of 1:14:00.

The full broadcast of the men’s HOKA ONE ONE IRONMAN VR17 Pro Challenge can be viewed, HERE.

Professional men’s results:

1. Matt McWilliams USA 00:06:19 00:53:46 00:08:28 1:08:33
2. Thomas Davis GBR 00:05:59 00:54:20 00:09:06 1:09:25
3. Santiago Ascenco BRA 00:06:01 00:55:29 00:08:40 1:10:10
4. Kevin Collington USA 00:06:04 00:58:19 00:09:37 1:14:00


On Saturday, the professional women took to the virtual start lines with Danielle Dingman (USA), a multi-time IRONMAN 70.3 Champion, taking the top spot in her first HOKA ONE ONE IRONMAN VR Pro Challenge appearance. Dingman completed the virtual triathlon with an overall time of 1:17:51. Following Dingman, multiple top-10 IRONMAN and IRONMAN 70.3 finisher, Natasha Van Der Merwe (USA) finished in second with a time of 1:23:52. Rounding out the women’s field were the Wassner Twins. Laurel Wasner (USA) clocked an overall time of 1:25:29 to take third spot, while Rebeccah Wassner (USA) finished in a time of 1:26:42.

The full broadcast of the women’s HOKA ONE ONE IRONMAN VR17 Pro Challenge can be viewed HERE.

Professional women’s results:

1. Danielle Dingman USA 00:07:44 01:00:03 00:10:04 1:17:51
2. Natasha Van Der Merwe USA 00:07:11 01:06:03 00:10:38 1:23:52
3. Laurel Wassner USA 00:06:36 01:07:29 00:11:24 1:25:29
4. Rebeccah Wassner USA 00:06:27 01:09:33 00:10:42 1:26:42

In total, over 8,000 athletes from more than 108 nations and 48 states set out to participate in IRONMAN VR17. The 5150 Olympic distance simulation requires athletes to complete a 3km Run, 40km Ride, and 10km Run between Friday, July 31 at 6 a.m. ET (10 p.m. GMT) and race close, Sunday, Aug. 2 at 7:59 p.m. ET (11:59 p.m. GMT). Competitors who race in the IRONMAN VR17 Classic division can do the three race segments anywhere, indoors or outdoors, in any order and are not required to do the segments consecutively.

The over 1,000 athletes who registered for the HOKA ONE ONE IRONMAN Virtual Racing Championship Series are bound by a different set of rules over a four-week long regulated age-group competition designed to reward top-performing athletes in a structured and competitive virtual environment. An athlete’s overall standing is based upon their top three performances in aggregate over a four-week period. Athletes competing will have the opportunity to earn race slots to the IRONMAN® 70.3® World Championship with a total of 75 qualifying slots allocated across age groups for top performers.

IRONMAN VR17 leaderboard updates can be found by visiting the IRONMANVR Facebook Page.

Bringing the IRONMAN community together virtually, the IRONMAN® Virtual Club™ continues to grow and now has more than 113,000 members on the platform with thousands completing IRONMAN Virtual Club Challenges since its recent launch.

Full details and specifics regarding the IRONMAN Virtual Club are available on www.ironmanvirtualclub.com. For questions about the IRONMAN Virtual Racing Series, athletes can email ironmanvr@ironman.com. For more information on the IRONMAN brand and global event series, visit www.ironman.com. Media related inquiries may be directed to press@ironman.com.


About The IRONMAN Group

The IRONMAN Group operates a global portfolio of events that includes the IRONMAN® Triathlon Series, the IRONMAN® 70.3® Triathlon Series, the IRONMAN® Virtual Racing™ (VR™) Series, 5150™ Triathlon Series, the Rock ‘n’ Roll Marathon Series®, the Rock ‘n’ Roll Virtual Running™ Series, IRONKIDS®, ITU World Triathlon Series, premier running events including the Standard Chartered Singapore Marathon™ and The Sun-Herald City2Surf® presented by Westpac, Ultra-Trail® World Tour events including Tarawera Ultra and Ultra-Trail Australia™, mountain bike races including the Absa Cape Epic®, road cycling events, and other multisport races. The IRONMAN Group is the largest operator of mass participation sports in the world and provides more than a million participants annually the benefits of endurance sports through the company’s vast offerings. Since the inception of the iconic IRONMAN® brand and its first event in 1978, athletes have proven that ANYTHING IS POSSIBLE® by crossing finish lines around the world. Beginning as a single race, The IRONMAN Group has grown to become a global sensation with hundreds of events across 55+ countries. The IRONMAN Group is owned by Advance (www.advance.com), a private, family-owned business. For more information, visit www.ironman.com.