Congratulations to Park Club Milton’s Active Star member, Darren Drysdale, who recently competed in the Ironman Triathlon 70.3 World Championships in Nice, France. Despite experiencing a few issues on his way round it was a successful event for Darren, who will continue to train hard at Park Club Milton for the next event. Darren has provided more detail about the event here:
“So.. 2 weeks ago I competed in the Ironman Triathlon 70.3 World Championships that took place in Nice, France. The race took place over 2 days – around 2,000 ladies raced on the Saturday and around 3,000 men on the Sunday with ages ranging from 18-80 from over 80 countries around the world!
The air temperature was around 28 degrees on the Sunday and the sea was 26 degrees – which meant a non-wetsuit swim.. nooo! The sea was a little bumpy and the volume of other swimmers meant you had to try and stay calm as you navigate the rectangular 1.2-mile course. I didn’t have a great swim but I got out and it was time for me to hammer the 56-mile bike ride to overtake as many other racers as possible.
If anyone knows Nice they will know that it’s hilly – really hilly! There were some 15% climbs early on but the main feature was the Col De Vence – a 13 mile/20k continuous climb with an average gradient of 6.5%.. ooof! I climbed this pretty well and managed to overtake around 150 other riders by the top of the climb – it was going ok until I then got a rear puncture just before the very fast, technical and potentially dangerous descent.. I thought I’d fixed it but unfortunately I only had partially inflated the tyre so I couldn’t ride anywhere near the speed I wanted – but.. I navigated lots of other riders on the descent, which unfortunately caught many others out and there were a lot of very nasty crashes.. I had ridden the course 2 days earlier so I knew the corners and sharp turns.
I started the half marathon in a similar state to my rear tyre – somewhat deflated! I made the decision to really soak up the day and massive crowds and keep my eyes on the professional race (Alistair Brownlee did the race and was 2nd). I did lots of High 5’s with the crowd and gritted my teeth as an old glute injury really came back to bite which I wasn’t expecting – but hey I got another World Championships medal to add to last year’s medal from South Africa.
I can’t thank the Park Club enough for their Active Star support – I’ll be in the gym and pool a lot over the coming months as I prepare for my next races – possibly Bahrain in December or Dubai in February and then the 70.3 European Championships taking place in Austria next June, where I race for the GB team which is always an honour".