Matt Randall first Kiwi home in Ironman champs

Invercargill's Matt Randall was the first Kiwi home in the Ironman Asia Pacific championships in Melbourne today, narrowly beating the nine-hour barrier to place 43rd overall.

Randall completed the 3.8km swim, 180km bike and 42.2km marathon distance run in 8 hours 58 minutes and 53 seconds.

The New Zealander trailed Luxembourg's Dirk Bockel who clocked 8:01.07secs to head off hard-chasing Australians Paul Matthews (8:02.22) and David Dellow (8:03.10).

Dellow's Swiss partner Caroline Steffen dominated the women's race to win in 8:57.56 and finish 41st overall.

She had the lead at the start of the run and was never threatened, winning by more than four minutes.

Americans Mary Beth Ellis (9:02.14) and Kim Schwabenbauer (9:10.05) took silver and bronze respectively.

Fairfax Media