South Island Half Ironman

18 11 2010

The South Island Half Ironman Champs will be contested this Saturday at the picturesque Lake Hood course in Ashburton. The event consists of a 2 km swim, 90 km cycle followed by a 21 km run – exactly half an Ironman.

Over 150 competitors are expected to line up on the day. Marlborough will be well represented with Sharon de Castro, Caroline McCarthy, Mary Lister and Hannah Maher. Most have been consistently training over 20 hours per week, in some cases for over a year, including days where a morning swim has been followed by a 4 or 5 hour bike ride and then a long run to finish.

For de Castro, it will be her second time at the event. Whilst McCarthy and Lister come from sporting and multi sport backgrounds it will be their first attempt at Half Ironman distance whereas for Maher it will be just her second time in a triathlon following on from her win in last Sunday’s local race.

Each competitor has overcome their own challenges to get to the start line. For Lister, it was the swimming, ‘basically I couldn’t swim (apart from holding onto my kayak when I fell out of it in a river) so I had to learn from scratch during the winter. I am hoping to have a good strong ride and survive the swim and run. A big thank you to Mark Grammer for coaching me for the last few months’. McCarthy admits that  this type of event can be very difficult due to the commitment of fitting it into an already busy home and working life but did acknowledge the part others had to play saying “It wasn’t hard training because I had a group of swimmers to do it with me every Tuesday and Thursday morning and every Saturday morning, I had a great coach who tailored everything around my life, I had a hugely supportive husband and family and friends.”

The event starts at 8.30am and competitors are likely to take anywhere from 5 hrs 30 mins to 6 hrs 30 mins or longer depending on the prevailing conditions.




2 responses

20 11 2010

Good luck to all racing. Go Marlborough!!

19 11 2010

Good luck you awesome ironwomen!!!

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