Monday, August 20, 2012

Race Report - Ironman 70.3 Yeppoon

 Well, Ironman 70.3 Yeppoon has been run and won and now I am back home trying to get the legs to move again. In short, the 70.3 distance (1.9km swim, 90km ride and 21km run) is LOOONNNGGGG.

So now for the longer version; I travelled up to Yeppoon on the Friday and enjoyed the day off relaxing and eating. Saturday rolled around and after a little ride and run I started to get my head ready to tackle this race. Being my first attempt at this style of racing I wasn’t quite sure what to expect so I went in with a very simple plan. Get myself to the finish line the quickest way that I possibly could. The intricacies of this meant pacing was a key factor and not getting trapped into someone else’s race plans.

On race morning it was a crisp temperature with a light breeze which somehow turned the ocean into a washing machine. After a very rough 1.9km swim there was a small breakaway, followed by the main bunch including all the main players of Aussie Long Course racing, including Australian Long Course Champion, Tim Reed. I exited the water 40 seconds down on these guys which was a little heartbreaking having to watch them run out of transition while I was coming in, knowing that it would be much nicer to have them with me. Anyway, I stuck to the plan I had set out and got busy riding a solid tempo that I thought gave me the best chance of a solid race. Also big thanks have to go to HED Wheels for helping me out this weekend and letting me roll around on a Jet Disc and Jet 9 front. This course was flat and fast and aerodynamics was a massive factor so it was great knowing that the wheels would perform regardless of how the legs went.

I jumped off the bike in 9
th place and was still feeling strong, slipped on my brand new Nike FlyKnit Racers (the coolest shoes going around and SOOOO comfy). Throughout the run I was aiming to hold a consistent tempo throughout and get to the finish line in good shape. Obviously with a race of this distance nutrition plays a large role, I had a pretty simple plan using a combination of Dextro Energy gels and their Carbo-mineral sports drink , this combination got me through the race without any cause for concern and I was very thankful I had them with me. After about the 14km point I managed to move into 8th position and this is where I would cross the line in a time of 4:08:06. The feeling of collapsing into the pool at the finish line was amazing.

I went into the race with a plan and executed it exactly as I had intended. For my first crack at long course racing and to be in the mix with some of Australia’s best felt absolutely fantastic and a massive step forward.

Finally, the biggest thanks has to be reserved for my new coach Matt Koorey, he has an ability to get through to me that I have never experienced with any other coaches and it sure is a rare talent. I am very excited about working into the future with Matt.

Ben Hammond

On the run course with my Nike FlyKnit Racers at Ironman 70.3 Yeppoon

1 comment:

  1. Excellent Ben. Congratulations on a great result and good luck with your upcoming long course preparation and racing.