Sunday was race day, and it was an absolute cracking Taranaki day, lots of sunshine and quite a strong wind. The race started at the very reasonable hour of 7.30 so we got a little sleep in. Pre race favourite Mark Bowstead took off like a rabbit at the start of the swim and we were all left chasing right from the start. I ended coming out of the water with Brodie Madgwick and another athlete about 1min40sec down on Mark. Up through transition and we even had change tents! Just like Challenge Wanaka or IMNZ, Brodie decided he wanted to check out the action in the girls tent and went in there.....
So onto the bike and it was basically a big tail wind out to the turnaround plus the numerous hills to negotiate, I think the longest piece of flat road was about 3k so it was a definite testing course. At the turn around Mark had increased his lead by about 20sec which I was very happy with as he and his brother James are well known for their biking ability. And Brodie was about 10sec back from me.
We all struggled back in to the head wind and over the hills, I remember going past a sign with 27k to New Plymouth and since I don’t use a speedo thinking “man this is a long long ride” as I thought I must be only 10-15k from home. The last 3-4km is basically all downhill so you can roll down the hill and into transition, I had opened up a small gap to Brodie of 30 odd seconds and Mark had increased his lead out to 3mins.
A pretty slow IM transition for me, straight up Bayley road and Brodie was on my heels, we ran the first lap pretty solid and cut Marks lead down to 1min30sec and I started to feel very confident we would catch him and me and Brodie would fight it out. The 2nd lap we eased up and ran up to Mark at the about the 12 kilometre point. Running along the esplanade it was pretty sheltered and it was getting very hot and sticky. Going into the last lap I made a little dig going over the top of a hill and felt Brodie slide off the back and then ran through the last lap pretty controlled to take the win. My first for TeamTimex.
I was pleased to get the “Monkey off the back” after my disappointing day in Wanaka a few weeks back, so next up is IMNZ in 3weeks where I hope to improve on last year’s performance.
My athletes from www.Vo2coach.com had great days, with Candice Hammond demolishing the womens field for the win and Grant Tuffery 2nd in his age group by only 10secsAgain a big congrats to Selwyn, a very well run event which is excellent timing for anyone who is lining up for IMNZ in 3 weeks time.