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Danish Ironman triathlete Torbjørn Sindballe retires due to "an abnormal heart valve"

Posted Jul 01 2009 9:01pm

Torbjørn Sindballe Most fans of Ironman racing will know Torbjørn Sindballe for his unique and "cooling" all white bike and run gear from the last couple Kona Ironman World Championships.

Fans might also recall Torbjørn Sindballe for his powerful and dominating bike style, his 2004 and 2006 ITU championships and of course a 3rd place finish at the 2007 Ironman World Championships.

The news today is that the big Ironman triathlete has retired due to "an abnormal heart valve" that left him hyperventilating in T2 at this year' s Wildflower Triathlon.

“The past months have been an emotional rollercoaster for my family and me. Going from world-class competition in the toughest sport in the world to fearing a heart surgery in the near future at the same time as your second child is born is an extreme experience” he said.

 “My wife, family, friends and sponsors have been a tremendous support in this process and the doctors have been outstanding in their evaluations. Based on the situation I feel good about the decision and can look back on an amazing career in an amazing sport.”

According to

"During wildflower triathlon in early May the Danish powerhouse ended his race hyperventilating in T2 after a very uncharacteristic bike ride during which he faded down the field with a drastically dropping HR and heavy fatigue. The Dane has known about an abnormal heart valve since 2005 and has had regular checkups to ensure he was safe to race. After the incident in California he has gone through extensive testing and evaluation with Danish experts. After considering their advice Torbjørn has decided to stop his career immediately."

“I am going to miss the lifestyle and the intense excitement of training and racing. Of course I’m sad that I will not get to see the impact of the big changes in my training we have made this year and that I will not be able to compete for the crown in Kona. On the other hand I am very proud of what I have achieved. Two ITU Long distance World Champs and a podium in Kona, where I am really not suited to race, is something I will carry with me forever. I have learned so much and feel very privileged.”

Below is an interview with the big Dane just before last year' s Ironman Kona World Championships:

  Follow on twitter @ everymantri

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