Well not being one to name drop on this occasion I cant really help myself. One of the cool things for me doing the Ironman this time around has been the opportunities I have had to train with some of the very best triathletes in the World. Now New Zealand has a very proud history in Triathlon over a variety of distances. With names like Rick Wells – World and Commonwealth games champion (pre Olympic Triathlon days), Erin Baker winner of just about everything she ever entered – to quote wikipidia 104 wins out of 121 races entered. Won Hawaii twice, many other Ironmans as well and a World Duathlon title. Kieran Doe winner of Ironman Canada, Bevan Docherty -World ITU champion and multiple Olympic medalist. Hamish Carter Olympic champion and on it goes.
Below after training this morning I managed to grab a quick photo with Terenzo Bozzone who is on my right and Cameron Brown. Terenzo has won multiple world junior titles in triathlon and Duathlon. An absolute machine who has gone on to be a major player in the elite seniors almost seamlessly. Last year Terenzo won the World Half Ironman title in Clearwater USA and in 2006 won Wildflower, California setting a new course record.
Cameron Brown on my left is gunning for his 8th New Zealand Ironman title this year. Cam has also won the European Ironman title in Germany and has multiple podium finishes in Hawaii! Pretty cool.
How and why I have I been training with these guys..? Well Im not really. Just happen to park my car in the same place and happen to know some people that know some people although all these guys from my experience have been down to earth approachable guys. Ive managed to keep up in the warm up and short sprints although I was losing close to a minute and a half in the 15 min pieces this morning. Probably a bit out of my training zone but too good an opportunity to miss.
Some of the other highlights are riding just over 200k on Camerons wheel a few weeks back and motor pacing with Meshy Holt NZ womens 2009 road race and Time Trial champion. Once again a fair bit over my training zones but I dont really feel that its going to cost me the race.. its been an awesome experience to see how these guys train and hopefully glean some insights that I may be able to transfer back to my approach to kayak training. These guys really enjoy their training but are totally focused and know exactly what they are trying to achieve. Ive learnt some good stuff all in all. Now its time to ease back and taper with around 10 days to go.