Ironman Melbourne – Racing on home soil

With the chance to race the best athletes in the world only a short 45 minute flight from my home town of Launceston, Tasmania I couldn’t say no!  I had been back home training since mid January and had a short but good preparation for the event.  6 months after my debut in Kona it was another great opportunity to learn more from the best in the game.  The step up from racing an event like IM Wisconsin which I won in a somewhat controlled fashion to a championship race was huge.  These races attract best athletes that are prepared to put it all on the line from the gun. It’s a race not a time trial like other IM events.  You have to be in the mix from the start and be prepared to walk home with your tail between your legs if you aren’t prepared or have a bad day.  Melbourne provided me with the opportunity to learn a lot and every opportunity that the race provided me to test myself I took it.  I swam hard and came out with the leaders.

I did what I had to to come off the bike with the lead group.  The bike provide huge paces changes which had the legs crying out to stop and then the next minute wondering why it was so easy!  I was aggressive on the run from the start and through myself in the mix rubbing shoulders with Crowie, Brown, Llanos and co.  I knew the fast pace (5.40 mile pace) was going to be undoing but it was an opportunity to experience what it takes to win a championship against champions.  Half was through the run my body started to break down and my form faltered.  Efficiency was thrown out of the window and I muscled my way home in 8th.  My post race evaluations harsh but fair.  For IM championship style racing my engine is good my chassis is weak.  This strength will come with age and a lot of strength training over the coming months and years.

For more information on Joe Gambles please contact Wattie Ink. at:  www.wattieink.com

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