Coming into Western Sydney I was pretty confident of a good result as my training numbers had been really strong since my 2nd place in Challenge Forster 3 weeks ago. It was an early start with the gun to go off at 6am but we were greeted with the ideal racing conditions. I have been working on my swim for the last month which was rewarded with myself exiting at the back of the main lead pack.
Onto the bike I was in the pre race plan position I wanted thanks to my improved swim. There was a pack of about 7 of us with 3 guys out in front. The pace was solid for the first lap but we started to lose some decent time to the 2 leaders. Onto the 2nd lap I moved to the front to share the workload with Matthew Pellow to try to limit the time loss to the leaders. I was confident in my running ability but didn’t want to give the leaders anymore than 3 1/2 min lead off the bike. We finished the bike with the group still intact with a split time of 2hrs 7min 7 secs.
As we went onto the run we had a deficit of approximately 3min 40secs to make up. I was feeling quite strong as I set off on the pursuit of the 2 leaders while also trying to gap a couple of the athletes I felt were the greatest threat in my group (Berkel and Kastelein). Through 5km I saw I had gapped everyone who I was riding with and was making up some good time on the 2 leaders. This gave me a boost of confidence and the thought that I could win this race. I ran into 2nd place not long after but it took me until about 18km until I caught the leader Montgomery. The last 3km hurt like hell as I was starting to struggle but knew i couldn’t throw this opportunity away. It wasn’t until the last 500m that I was confident that I had the win and could enjoy the moment. I came across the finish line in a course record time of 3hrs 48min 23secs with the fastest run time of the day of 1hr 12min 39secs.
I’m absolutely stoked to win my first Ironman 70.3 and hopefully this is just the start of many more to come. My next race is Ballarat 70.3 in 2 weeks where I’m planning to try to repeat this result. I can’t thank my coach Pete Clifford enough with his help over past 3 months since we started working together and of course my sponsors who provide me with the best gear possible, without it none of this would be possible.