It has been a little while since my last post. I have been flat out catching up on work since my last adventures and I have finally finished the last three events on my 2015 racing calendar.
- Sydney to Gong ride.
- Highland Fling ½ MTB at Bundanoon NSW.
- WA Busselton Ironman Triathlon.
I picked up my training after a few weeks rest from the Darwin to Broome. I was doing three swim squads and four rides a week. Of course no running, not allowed running, doctors’ orders. The two events (the Gong and the Highland Fling) would be included as a part of my training for the Ironman in Western Australia I have just completed. I enjoy training just as much as I love to compete in races.
Nov 1st – Like I said , I have this thing about training and racing. OMG, I put the two together that day. Waking up at 2:45am was and wasn’t easy….you know what I mean. My day started with a ride, what I would call a training ride from Elderslie to St Peters (55kms). About eight of us from work met at the BP service station to ride the Sydney to Gong (90kms). A race that’s not really a race. I rode my MTB, the trusty “Northern Express” and kept with most of the guys on their racers. I did a P.B. 3:01:21.
I then rode home up Mt Kiera (64kms). OMG it is steep and people complain about the two hills in the Gong ride. The elevation picture shows the difference. I must still be quite bike fit from the Darwin ride as I recovered really well.
Nov 8th – The very next week end I ventured down to Bundanoon for the Highland Fling mountain bike race. I did the Half Fling (56kms), it truly is a mountain bike marathon race for all. It offers a scenic and challenging route through forests and farmland in the Southern Highlands of NSW, hammering single track, forest tracks, dirt road and less than 2km of blacktop.
What a blast it was, a bit wet at times, a shower or two, but no significant rain, an absolute fun day. I beat last years’ time by 30 minutes. Now back into my last few training rides, ready for the Ironman.
Nov 14th – My youngest daughter Angela is doing the Ironman Triathlon as well and we have been training together when we can. Ange came with me a couple of Saturday mornings to swim squad at Picton and we finish the afternoon off with 100+km ride. I remember one Saturday we swam 4kms in our wetsuits (good practice and to see if they still fit from last year) and went for a ride in the rain on the M7 bike path (twice) a total of 154kms. At one point the rain was so heavy that the track was flooded.
Dec 3rd – Off to Busselton in Western Australia, we flew over to Perth, hired a car and headed down south to “Busso” (as they call it). What a beautiful place. Pity about the weather it was mostly overcast over the six days we had there.
We wake up race morning and it’s bucketing down. The weather man said it should stop around 6:30 to 7:30. Funny, we’ll get wet in the swim leg, ha. Angela and I will handle it…..poor Andrew Gleeson (Angela’s partner) has to stand around supporting us in the rain.
It was a tough day, but, a great day!, finishing the WA Ironman Triathlon with my youngest daughter Angela. The sea was angry, the winds were howling, it rained and at times there was some sunshine. We endured all that was thrown at us and finished across the line together. There was a moment when I had doubts whether my leg would get me to the end. With torn hamstrings I am only able to walk the marathon. Ange talked and talked and in no time we were at the finish shoot. It was a very special moment for me.
This was Angela’s 2nd and my 6th Ironman Triathlon. Hey guys you have time to do one of these, I was 49 when I did my first one.
It has been a great year for me; riding Darwin to Broome and completing this race all at the young age of 60 and feeling quite fit.
A note from Angela……..
“Well. What a tough 15 hour and 49min day it was in Busselton. The weather man definitely wasn’t on our side, with winds up to 50km/hr. Made for a very tough swim (swallowing bucket loads of salt water) and a ride that felt up hill the whole time. Nevertheless, we made it. Kenny Mac had a blinder of a ride, making me run 30km to catch him. Walking the last 12km with him was the best experience, but nothing topped walking hand in hand with my gem of a father down the finish shoot. It is definitely an experience I will cherish for a very long time. All that matters is that, ‘we are IRONMAN’!!!”
Enjoy your Christmas break, I surely will. Yes……… I’ll still be swimming and riding over the break, riding to the top of Australia in January. It’s on my bucket list to climb to the top of Mt Kosciusko. Tell you about it in the new year. Hope you all had a very Merry Christmas and a big Happy New Year.