The Ironman show came to Melbourne over the weekend, with Tasmanian endurance warriors doing the state proud. Professional Joe Gambles finished 8th against a quality field and Hobart’s Tim Sloane booking a place to Kona with a strong showing in the 45-49 age group.
Gambles (8.12.46) had a good showing, being within striking distance off the bike, but had some tough opposition and fast running times to contend with. Further back in the field Paul Gambles (13.13.09) finished 5 hours behind his son, and was happy to finish a big day.
Experienced campaigner Hayden Armstrong was very happy with his day after breaking through the 9 hour barrier and a new PB of 8.58.56.
The rumours that Tim Sloan (9.28.09) had been putting in the hard yards in preparation came to fruition, with the Hobart ultra marathon runner able to book a ticket to Kona in the 45-49 age group. There was some close racing between Sloan, Launceston’s Scott Schlig (9.30.16) and Kim Gillard (9.29.11), with all three finishing within 2 minutes of each other. Gillard struggled on the swim in his first IM, but was able to bring it home on the run, with a 3.04.40 marathon. Not bad for his first attempt!
The opening swim leg of 3.2km was one lap of the Frankston foreshore. The conditions were slightly choppy, making navigation difficult early for the 1600 competitors. After the first transition, the 180km cycle followed the new EastLink Tollway. The surface was very smooth and fast, making for fast times considering the northerly wind and the 12% gradient in the tunnel, which was negotiated twice. The final 42.2 km run made it way back from Frankston to the finish at St Kilda Sea Baths.
All the Tassie competitor splits are listed below. If there is anyone I’ve missed, drop me a line!
For those of you looking to get to this event in 2013, you had better commit this week, with entries open here this Friday!!! This will sell out in minutes, so get that internet connection upgrade and start training.
The images above were provided by local tassie triathlete Scott Hunter. Check out his blog here.