I was looking forward to this race as soon as they announced the date! Not very often do you get to sleep in your own bed at home before riding to the race venue down the road on race morning! Compared to my targeted races put on by ‘Challenge’ and ‘Ironman’, this race didn’t mean much in terms of prize money and status in the sport.........although, this was my stomping ground, where all my friends and family would be cheering me on, so If anything I probably put more pressure on myself than ever to make all the people who support me proud.
It was awesome to see accomplished triathletes Mitch Robins and Richard Pearson on the start list, Yamba is a pretty enticing place to visit, who could blame them!
Ive never been fond of cold water, in fact anything under 25degrees in my books is too cold, so lucky for me it was a wetsuit swim in one of Yamba’s summer hotspots – whiting beach. Early in the swim I found some clear water (which is a new experience for me!), and held a strong tempo, exiting the water with a nice little gap to 2nd and 3rd.
With a long 600m run to T1, I was given some friendly cheers from the locals, and was able to extend my lead even further. It took me about 10km to find my legs on the bike, and after that I was able to open up a bit. Approaching the end of the 2nd of 3 laps, Richard Pearson came grinding passed me. We were then able to pace off each other for the last lap, opening up a 1minute gap going into t2.
I set of really hard quite early trying to trick Pearson into thinking I was feeling great. I was able to open up a slight lead, but it wasn’t long before I could see the renowned runner Mitch Robins Motoring me down. I was running as quick as my legs would carry me, which was a case of ‘close but not close enough’. Mitch caught and passed me with about 2km to go, and only ended up about 20 seconds ahead at the finish line.
I think it’s also important to mention that I wasn’t the only one in our household gloating with a medal. Our household cleaned up – My brother Brendan was 2nd in his age, Dad was 3rd in his age, my partner Jess and Brothers partner Erin got 2nd in the teams event, and my eldest brother Ashley was awarded with a 3 minute break in the penalty box for being caught drafting on the bike......haha.
Overall it was a great weekend. I was given so much support from the locals, and was treated like a legend by the kids at school on Monday.
I also really enjoyed watching all the locals getting involved in teams. It really added to the fun atmosphere. Can’t wait for next year!