- Triathlon Name
Ironman Melbourne (3.8Km swim, 180Km bike, 42.2Km run)
Sunday, March 25, 2012
Who Are you?
Four time Iron distance finisher and 8 time long course distance race finisher.Middle of the pack age grouper who loves to get out there and give it a go!
Why did I do this race?
First time Ironman was run in my home city so of course I had to do it!!
The swim is one lap in the ocean. You swim out from Frankston pier in a rectangle direction.
You had to stand under the arch for the pros to start before we were allowed onto the beach. Only issue was, there was spectators as well athletes so it made it really squishy! Once we were allowed onto the beach, it was a lot better. The current was such that it was slowly pushing everyone forward as well as people swimming forward too so the swim start was further forward than meant to be so many people didn’t feel they had a fair start.
There was a current pushing into you on the long straight which slowed you down. The bouys were hard to spot but this also was confounded by the issue of starting in the dark.
Overall, the swim was straight forward but more bouys were needed for sighting.
The bike is two loops on the Eastlink freeway. It is unique in the way that you are riding on the smoothest roads around and there is a lot of room on the road for passing people as well as vehicles to pass when needed.
The wind picked up on the second lap which made the ride harder.
In the inital pitch, everyone thought the ride was going to be flat but there is some false flats and gentle climbs.
The tunnel near the turn around is only 5.5% average, not the 12% as everyone thought it was. The turn around seems to be further away than expected but the bike course measured accurately.
There is a potential for a lot more wind on this course due to the way the road is, but luckily we didn’t have too much wind this time.
Aid stations are every 15k and they are well stocked. Coke available from 105k onwards.
The run is a point to point course. You do a little out and back in Frankston to make up the distance. This first part is somewhat frustrating because you don’t feel as thought you are heading in the right direction, but then there is a beautiful little forrest section that some of the locals didn’t even know existed!
The first half of the run is on a cambered course. Tip – run towards the middle of the road but beware of traffic. This is the flattest section of the road.
The run then goes onto the running path at the half way point in Mordialloc. The path is beautiful, as you run along the beach.
Aid stations are every 2k and they are run by local triathlon clubs so each one is fun as they promote their clubs and want to put back into the sport.
They provide gels, powerbar lollies, gatorade, water and coke.
Many people found it hard to get along the course due to the traffic but there is live sights every 10k with video of the race and commentators to announce as you run through these points.
It is a short run from the beach into transition. You hang up your bags the day before and collect them on the way through into the change tent.
The process if very straight forward and works well. Gives it a Kona feel to the race.
There are volunteers in the tent with sunscreen. Water and gatorade are available in the transition from bike to run.
This race is very professionally run and well worth going to the welcome show and awards functions.
The food is better than I have had at any other race, especially at melt down.
Race briefing is a 15min video that you are expected to watch. Much better than sitting through a long race briefing.
Atmosphere was fantastic through the race and especially the finish line. Lots of energy to get you through.
Top Ironman Melbourne Race Tips
Run next to the cones in the first 20k on the road, it is the flattest place with the camber.
The bike is not flat. But the tunnel is flatter than inital rumours. Train on hills as well as flat. A lot of time is spent in aero so make sure you work on your core strength.
Get into the water as soon as you can and go to the starting bouys, a lot of people were caught off guard at the start because they did not realise the time and were still swimming to the start.
How did you do?
I had an average race. It all fell apart due to nutrition mistakes and meant I had a 15k walk to finish.
But overall, I loved the race and the experience.
It was amazing not to have to pack my own bike and travel anywhere. There is nothing like sleeping in your own bed after a race!!
This was the first race in Melbourne and therefore there was a few teething problems that will be easily sorted out in the race debrief and next year it will continue to grow.
It is fantastic to have a local race to do, but you have to be quick on the internet to gain an entry because it is the fastest selling race in Ironman history.
I will do this race again, but not for a few years. I want to see how it grows and do other races elsewhere in the meantime. For me, it’s about seeing different parts of the world and then racing at the same time is the best way to do it.
You can follow Melissa on Twitter @rangamel She’s worth it!
If you have done a triathlon and want to post a triathlon review then send it through. Every review you do for BeyondTransition helps us write better race guides and other triathletes enjoy their races more.
- Ironman Melbourne: a spectator’s view (tri247.com)
- Ironman Melbourne: Swim & Bike Course Preview (triathlon.competitor.com)
- Ironman Melbourne 2012 Results Analysis (beyondtransition.com)
- Ironman Melbourne Course Review – 25th March 2012 – Arif Sidek (beyondtransition.com)
- Ironman Melbourne, Asia Pacific Championships – Race Report (tritwins.blogspot.com)