Wednesday, March 9, 2016

Ironman NZ


Taupo NZ. No Filter, which seems hard to believe doesn't it? Probably the best sunset of my life or at least my memory!
The IMNZ GK Crew from left to right, Anthony, Justine, Kate, Mick and Guy

Race day doesn't get much better in NZ, Light breeze, 13-26 Degree weather. You couldn't have scripted a better day for an Ironman race. (IMNZ has had it all too)

My Prep has been absolutely awesome. I've been riding and running faster and further than ever before.

The GK Endurance crew Plus Kate and Jeff have really helped me get into shape and I know the season ahead will be my best yet, this is in no small part thanks to them.

Our accommodation in Taupo was "Sweet as, Choice and Mint" all rolled into one awesome word which currently doesn't exist.
Kate on the balcony, The run course and swim course are right out the front. The start just 1.7KM to the right.

The Rocket ship ready for battle.


I woke up to a still morning and thought I was in the twilight zone. "Taupo, no wind? WHAT"

The usual pre race check went to plan, I chatted with Callum Millward before the start and he kept me entertained with his witty one liners until it was time to get in the water.


The Swim start was fast and for the first 2KM I felt like we were moving really well. (My perceived effort my high) then on the return journey the pace dropped and I was swimming comfortably behind Paul Matthew's.(I know this due to his kick pattern under the water, yes it's strange.. Sorry Barny) I soon figured out why the pace had dropped when I saw Clayton Fettel slowing moving backwards through our group (Kinda shark like). I figured he had enough of towing us round and was letting some-one else do the work, Unfortunately none of us come from the same swim pedigree as Clayton, so the pace stayed comfortable for the return trip. At one point I felt Clayton Grab my leg and I thought" Is he going to drag me under or use me as a propulsion device"? But to my surprised he pushed me forward and basically shot me ontop of Paul. It cracked me up and I had a chuckle in the water to myself. I never got to ask him why that happened but I figured he was making room for himself as we were swimming single file .

With a 46min swim under our belt we exited the water and ran hard to T1. I was trying to limit the amount of lactic acid I produced during this 500m Barefoot run. ( I didn't succeed.)

Onto the bike and we quickly settled into a hard sustainable effort. Terenzo, Paul and Dylan were just up the rode and I was in a group of 4 riding strong until about 45KM when Cameron and a group of 5 other riders caught us. Then things got a little crazy!!  It wasn't until we caught the front of the race at about 60km did the pace settle back down again.  I paid close attention after that, So I way always close to the front. At about 130KM our group which was 12 Plus guys (after lap one) had dwindled to 6 riders.  I looked at my watts and thought "hmmmm, this is pretty hard"so I covered my screen with a gel wrapper. That's normal right?

heading back into town from Reporoa turn around 150KM (I think) Is that aero?

Callum Millward and I sharing a moment about 100km into the ride.  He looked over to find me staring at him, then looked away and back again to find me still staring at him, then we both started laughing. 

Coming into T2, I felt good, I had a spring in my step and was happy with how the day was unfolding. I went out onto the run holding 4min/k or just over and thought this isn't to bad. Until I saw the spilt at 14km and realised that holding just over 4's mean't I was 5min down to the front. WTF? Still I kept my cool and held my pace, This race was about me getting the best from myself. By the time I hit 21KM in 1:29 I knew things were getting ugly still I braved it out and said "it will get better" hahaha... I flat out lied to myself. The next 21km was an emotional roller coaster, I kept hurting myself and pushing myself but the legs weren't moving as I had hoped they would. I lost 20min over the next 21KM running a 3:19 marathon. I made my choices on the day and I  still think they were the right ones. I feel like we are so close to that "Great Ironman" and I'll keep battling on till we get it. I got to the finish line  and hugged my family. Mum, Grandma, Brother, Sister, Kids, and extending family who had come to watch us race, this was for them as much as it was for me.

1st lap 10KM, Running and pretty happy

Second lap 23-25km sort of running and pretty un-happy
The Finish line, giving my nephew Ben a high 5. Back to being happy again!
I finished in 11th in a time of 8:43:28

My horizons have changed since winning 70.3 Taiwan last year, I know what it take's to get back on the podium and I plan on making it there! Ironman NZ was a stepping stone for the rest of the year and I know I'll gain the benefit's of a hard early season IM soon.

Big thanks to my training partners for getting me ready to rumble. In particular Brad Kaye for getting me bike fit again, Kate and the GK Crew for the constant motivation and dailey support.

My family the Crawford / Bevilqaua's and my family of sponsors, You are all amazing and the relentless support you give is second to NONE!! Thank-you!!

Next up is 70.3 Taiwan in just a few weeks. Stayed tuned and thanks for being the legends that you are!

Below are a few pic's for our travel's in NZ.

Kate is afraid of the cold water! Me and the go pro aren't.

Chateau Ruapehu 

heading up the Ski-lifts. falling out would be VERY unforgiving this time of year!

Karen and Kate at the highest cafe in NZ. 2030m 


Getting my selfie on. Our Accommodation. 
Another selfie blueseventy style, water and sun!!

Taupo water make's for some great underwater pic's. Kona eat your heart out!

Clouds below us on Ruapehu 

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