It was my second Ironman this year trying to get some points on the board for Kona. My trip to Brazil didn’t start off very well due to severe weather and an unexpected landing plus refuelling at Austin on my connecting flight before returning back to Dallas. I missed my flight that evening to Brazil. I had to wait for the following evening to fly out which meant I landed late on Thursday evening instead of Wednesday. All I could do was stay calm and not let the disruptions of the travel worry me to much before my race!
To add to the terrible travel and pre-race prep there were millions of mosquitos on my first night that loved me so much. I had massive bites all over my body and for 2 days I couldn’t stop itching! The hotel upgraded me to a better room and was not touched by 1 mosquito from then on.
My tune ups on the swim/bike/run felt so good training that even a 4min/km on the run felt like a little jog (Must have been the altitude training up in Boulder). I was really happy with this especially after the terrible travel I had!
4am- Wake up
4:05am- Got dressed
4:20am- Had black coffee and some easy to digest breakfast.
4:30-am- think about my race!
4:45am- caught a taxi down to transition
5:10am- arrived at T1 to do my routine checks: pump tyres, tape my GU chomps on the bike, pour GU roctane in my water bottles, put bike shoes on, calibrate my power meter.
5:45am- checked my transition bags
5:55am- started putting my wetsuit on
6:10am- walk down to swim start
6:25am- Did a warm up swim and some activation stuff
6:40am- stood on the start line looking out at the ocean
6:45am- BOOM! gun fired, a furious pace scramble to try stick with the front pack.
7am- still swimming FAST, not getting dropped this time (It’s all in the head)
7:09am- Got out the water to run 100m along the beach and back in the water which is the absolute worst, feels like all your energy has been zapped out your arms and legs!!!
7:20am- In a good position with the second group
7:33:31am- exited the water with the second pack
7:36am- Jumped on my Ventum One and slipped the feet in my shoes
7:42am- Made the decision right there to not go with Marino and Tyler and stick to my own race this time. They were pushing crazy numbers in the beginning.
8am- riding well around 300w and controlling my heart rate and nutrition.
8:30am- in around 9th place and feeling amazing
8:45am- caught Mike and Per and moved to the front of our 3 man pack
9:30am- still on the front maintaining a good pace
9:44am- got a time check and was 4min back from Tyler and Marino (Avg 304W)
10:30am- Still maintaining good power but focusing mostly on my nutrition and aero dynamics
10:45am- Another time check around 8min back from the leaders
11:15am- legs were starting to get tired but was still pushing around 280-290W
12:02pm- Jumped off my Ventum One and ran into transition
12:03:30- Left transition and felt so good running, very light footed and made the most of the ON Cloud racers
12:30pm- Still feeling amazing running around 3:50-3:55 per/km
1:25:30- went through half way (21km)
1:40pm- got passed by fellow South African Matt Trautman (who was flying) & I moved into 8th
2:15pm- Passed Mike to move into 7th place. Legs started to scream, but I was telling them to “shut up and run”
2:35pm- really starting to struggle but still on for a good marathon time
2:50pm- last KM which lasts forever!
2:54:31pm- Crossed the finish line in 7th (8:09:31) with my fastest marathon of 2:50:31hr (6min PB)
2:55pm- Soaking it all in, very happy with my result.
3:15pm- Eat and massage.
5:30pm- Climbed on the bike and rode back to the hotel with Tyler Butterfield who finished 5th
6pm- chatted to my amazing wife and family about my race
Still some Kona points to catch!!!!
Congrats to 1st Marino Vanhoenacker, 2nd Tim O Donnel, 3rd Brent McMahon
And to my amazing sponsors who keep me going: Velocity Sports Lab, Ventum racing, ON Running, ENVE Composites, Santini SMS, GU Energy.
To my coach Ben day- DaybyDayCoaching & Tim Ellerbeck @ Velocity Sports Lab (Strength & Conditioning)
Onwards & Upwards…..*