The Mandurah 70.3 in November 2016 was cancelled this year. So I thought this would be the perfect opportunity to compete in the half IM while experiencing the full IM course (including the atmosphere) because I am thinking of maybe racing the full IM next year (if I can hide Sue’s gun before she shoots me!) .
I was fortunate to be able to car pool with Matt Kraus on the way down. We stayed in a park home just out of Busselton. Just after arriving we caught up with James Berry, Matts partner in crime for the weekend (team) and headed straight out for the customary pre-race ride and swim. The water by this stage was quite choppy, so it was good to get in and get a feel for the water before race day.
After looking around the merchandise tents and deciding not to buy an IM 70.3 visor for $79 we all registered, stickered our bike’s and headed for transition. I still do not get why so many triathletes turn this into a big process. Bike on the rack, walk out row 4 easy.
I am a creature of habit, Lasagna and salad for dinner, drink bottles filled, double check gear and lights out. Alarm set for 3.30am.
Race day greeted us with light winds and a max temp of around mid 20deg – perfect
Swim 1.9km 33:09
The swim was a self-seeded rolling start from the end of the Jetty swimming back towards the beach. Starting from the second wave 30-35min. I slowly walked my way down the ramp to the deck below the jetty stepping over the timing mat and into the water. Starting in rows of 4. Being 1.5m off the water I jumped as to not lose a contact lens if my goggles came off. Straight out 100m then left turn towards the beach. The swim was very pleasant, not a smash fest. I got past by a few people and also made up a few spots. Not one punch. The huge yellow marker buoys were easy to spot, this made sighting very easy. I would hate to have swum in the wrong direction and blow an extra 100m and time.
A very long run into T1 under the jetty along the foreshore over a walk bridge and into transition. I must have looked a little strange as I took a little pit stop, wetsuit on. While casually walking over the footbridge ,without a care in the world. Sorry for that info.
Bike 90km 2:38:46
The bike was 1 x 90km lap with 5 turns . I settled onto the bike for the first 10km then took my first gel shot and then every 30min after this, with 1 x cliff bar in-between. I have practiced this so many times on my longer training rides that I just do it now without second guessing myself. The course this year took me past my Uncle and Aunties property and I was fortunate to have my cousin Melissa Ashby and her daughter Charlotte cheering me on. Wow , what a lift just when I was hurting, Thank you.
Pause for a second - I am always looking for things to motivate me especially when I am suffering. How far was Matt Kraus behind me on the bike leg. Push hard Ash. Coming into Transition , Matt was right on my back wheel , wow he was flying.
I can see my running shoes and kit on the grass , but where is my bike space gone . I have to push 2 bikes out the way just to get by bike on the rack. Shoes on (no socks) hat on and go go go.
Run 21,1km 1:51:34
My favorite leg of the race. With all the adrenalin pushing you along from transition I always come out to fast. My plan was to sit on 4.45-4.50per km for the run so as per normal the brakes go on after the first k out the blocks. I felt really good, bloody good. 12km in and I was ticking over nicely , small drink of coke at every aid station followed by a sip of water. 17km in and now I am suffering. So now I look to my motivation again, James Berry (Matts team mate) is in front of me and I have been slowly catching him the whole run. Digging deep I think I passed JB with 1.5k to go.
Busselton 70.3 - 5:08:38
This is my 4th half ironman all coached by Paul Jones
at F4L triathlon coaching. Every race I continue learn and improve. This race being a PB of 3 min. My goal for Busselton in May is sub 5 hours. I know I will get there with hard work and by sticking to the plan(STTP). Also I very big thank you must go to Dee Rust at Orora Beverage Cans for your continued support. Thank You.