As a child, Katharina (or ‘Keuli’) Grohmann worshipped the fictional character Pipp Longstocking. Now it is long distances instead as she dreams of an IRONMAN victory.
A triathlete since 2010 and a professional since 2013, Katharina first got into the sport when she suffered a shin fracture while running. Her doctor recommended alternative training, so she signed up for an IRONMAN as her first foray into triathlon.
Grohmann competed largely over the full distance earlier in her career, notching top-10 finishes at Frankfurt, Mallorca and in Malaysia in 2015 and then at South Africa, Frankfurt (again), Wales and Taiwan in 2016.
She again placed in the top 10 at full distance in Cairns and South Africa in 2017 before finishing 28th in the IRONMAN World Championship at Kona, her favourite race of all.
2018 brought more impressive performances as Keuli took second spot at IRONMAN Hamburg, third in Taiwan and seventh in South Africa. She also took fifth over middle distance at Kraichgau.
Another top-10 finish (sixth) at IRONMAN Hamburg came in 2019 along with a seventh in Finland and a sixth at Emilia-Romagna (both at middle distance).
In terms of the three triathlon disciplines, Grohmann absolutely puts running at number one, while she admits to finding swimming pretty tough having learned to crawl late.
Katharina’s biggest rival is herself she tells us, while she is proud of never having given up despite the many setbacks she has endured. She is driven by “the imagination that one day my dreams will come true”.
Away from the triathlon course, Keuli loves a pizza when it comes to cheat meals and also enjoys listening to some German pop, dance or house.
Grohmann is a mountain lover and seeing Mount Everest while touring the Himalayas was a particularly special moment in her life.
When it comes to the best advice she has received for race day, it has to be: “Listen to your body and don‘t let the others drive you crazy”.