Since my start as a triathlete in January 1998, I have worked my way to the world elite. I have given both long- and short distance triathlon a go with much success.
On my way towards the Olympics I managed to win the European Championships in April 2004, before getting a decent 7th place in Athens. In Beijing 2008 I got a respectable 8th place, but I never won that Olympic medal. Apart from those my best results over the distance are 5 World Cup wins (Athens 2003, Hamburg 2004, Mazatlan 2006 and Des Moines 2007 + 2008, in which I won the largest prize purse in triathlon history, 200.000$ + a Hummer H3 - only in 2007).
During the early parts of my triathlon career I raced twice over the Ironman distance (3.8km swimming/180km cycling/42.2km running). The first time was at the open Danish Champs in Fredericia in 2000, a race that I actually won, and the second time was at the World Champs on the same course the year after, awarding me the World Championships silver medal.
Focus on Ironman racing
After the 2008 Olympic Games I gave some serious thought to how my career should continue, and I decided to try out the longer distances again. In 2009 my success continued with victories at Ironman China and European Long Distance Championships and a spectacular 5th place in my debut at the Ironman World Championships in Hawaii - despite having broken my hand 17 days prior to the race. 2010 was a season with both highs and lows for me. The big high obviously being my great win at Challenge Roth in July in one of the fastest finish times in Ironman history – 7.52.36 hrs – and especially my marathon of 2.39 hrs. The big low, on the other hand, happened in Kona in October when I had a complete off day where everything went wrong and I only finished in 23rd position.
I come from a competitive swimming background at a high Danish level. Through my whole career I swam with the VAT89 swim team west of Copenhagen, and I took part in multiple Danish Champs and a few international meets. My best events were 200m freestyle (1.54 short course) and 200m IM (2.09 short course), which at the time were good enough to qualify for the Danish B-squad. I never won any individual medals at Danish Champs, however I won several relay medals, two of which were gold in 4x100 and 4x200m freestyle in 1996.
I grew up in the suburb of Albertslund west of Copenhagen and lived there until, in 2001 I moved to Farum, 20km northwest of Copenhagen, to train at the national training centre. The training possibilities in Farum are fantastic, and I really like the town and the beautiful surroundings as well. While we are in the process of building a new house in Hillerod a bit further north of Farum and Copenhagen, my family and I have chosen to live and train at the fabulous Playitas Sports Resort on the Canary Island of Fuerteventura. My wife Anita, who normally works as a nurse, has taken a year’s leave of absence from work, and our two daughters Caroline (born August 2005) and Emilie (born February 2007) are enjoying life in the sun with more time with their parents than usual.I have a done a college degree in teaching (finished in 2003). All along I have considered it very important to finish my degree before going 100% for my triathlon career. After graduation, however, the time had come to build a life as a full time triathlete.
As a top triathlete it is possible to live off the sport with support from sponsors and price money, as well as some support from the national federation. As it looks now I couldn’t think of a better job. I am privileged enough to be able to life off my hobby. I lead a very varied and flexible lifestyle, and I get to travel the world for training camps and races seeing and experiencing a lot, and I have friends all over the globe. Between 2008 and 2010 I was also working part time for the Danish Triathlon federation as a talent development consultant, but I finally realized that I needed to concentrate 100% on my own athletic career.