Swim 2nd 27:26
Bike 1st 1:31:40
Run 1st 44:06
Who could resist the offer to spend 10 nights in beautiful Phuket staying at the famous Banyan Tree Resort? Not me! So this year I decided to tackle the double for the first time. Today I took on the prestigious Laguna Phuket Triathlon. This was it's 20th year running and it has attracted some of the most well known names in triathlon history. And then next weekend I will race Challenge Phuket Half Iron distance.
The roads were wet and the course was technical with sharp twists and turns. I don't have a very good record riding in the wet so I took it easy and "tried" to stay upright. I got to the first hill, less than 5km in and passed Macca. I knew Radka would not be too far away. But after I climbed up the first hill I had to descend down this crazy ass mountain that was like a slip and slide with an extra twist at the bottom for good luck! Plus there was moss all over the damp roads. It was mighty scary. It was a yellow flag zone which meant under 20kph - thank god! I survived (this one).
I was hoping that all the sketchy sections were now outa the way but I as
wrong. The next few km's I was like a toddler on a bicycle for the first time. I was absolutely crawling around the corners and almost cried when I saw the next roller coaster hill. I got to the top and I remember saying out loud "are you serious?". I started braking but my brakes locked up. My front wheel starting sliding then my back. I started pumping my brakes but my wheels were just sliding down almost sideways and at the bottom was another sharp right hand turn. I wasn't going to make it. Quick thinking and remembering a story Holly Bennett told me of her experience last year saw me unclip and slid down on my feet. That was quite an experience. And painless. I continued on.
Macca flew through Transition super fast, while I took the time to put socks on. So we ran out almost together and ended up running side by side for a bit over 5km before I put on a surge to drop the multiple Ironman World Champion. No biggie - just another day at the office ;-). The next 7km went pretty smooth. I had a good lead and got to enjoy the friendly spectators and acknowledge the amazing volunteers. The last km passes by the chapel, past the canal village, through the elephant park before entering the home straight where Candy, the baby elephant joins me for the final 100m run down to the finish chute. I wave the Aussie flag while Candy waves her trunk. After we cross the finish line I hold the banner up high over my head while Candy takes the opportunity, while I'm distracted, to plant a big fat kiss on my cheek.
Apart from nearly wetting my pants on the bike I had an absolute ball out there. Swimming in the beautiful ocean, riding around the local streets of Phuket and then running through the elephant park. Can you believe this is my job? And THEN having Candy run down the finish chute with me - just awesome :-)