Hello WTC, I'd like to tell you about the 2014 Tour de Chance – which happens in just 5 weeks!
I’m joining 17 others who will cycle from Manly QLD (near Brisbane) to Manly NSW (home) to raise money for a wonderful Brookvale-based charity called Fighting Chance. Fighting Chance provides innovative programs for young adults with physical disabilities to engage in purposeful and fulfilling education, skill development and work experience activities. The money we will raise through the Tour de Chance 2014 will (amongst other things) double the current number of places available for physically disabled participants. A full summary of how the money we raise will be used is on the TdC webpage.
So on 27th February, we will begin cycling from Manly in Brisbane and finish in Manly. We will cover the 1,100kms over 10 days – finishing on Saturday March 8th. I can’t wait!!!
My personal target is to raise $15,000 for Fighting Chance and for this I need your support. Can I ask you to please dig deep for this worthiest of causes and sponsor me for the ride.
To make your tax deductible donation, please follow this link http://makingadifference.gofundraise.com.au/page/Miller_Eric You will automatically receive a tax receipt for your donation and the funds will be channelled directly to Fighting Chance.
You can find out more about the wonderful work Fighting Chance does at http://www.fightingchance.org.au or via Facebook https://www.facebook.com/fightingchanceaustralia
"Every time you are out there with the sun on your back spare a thought for me on the trainer in my garage in sunny Wales!"
Name: Steven Middleton
Supporters: Wife Lucy, daughter Matilda 4, and new son Tudor 8 weeks
How long WTC member? 2-3 years
Why triathlon? I was new to all 3 sports before coming to Australia. Then got roped into a team event at Noosa and was hooked. What keeps me loving the sport is how your limits are continuously being tested. And like most others I do have an addiction to suffering:)
Goals for 2013/2014 season: Top 10 in my AG at IM Wales
How do you juggle training & work/life? Very early mornings, not hard when you have an 8 week old human alarm clock.
Most memorable tri experience to date: At IM Cairns last year. Having my Wife Lucy fly up and surprise me on race day. I find it a huge motivation racing with family support and was a little disappointed they weren't able to make the trip. As I came into T2 she was there waiting. I completely forgot to take my feet out of my shoes almost tripped running with my bike and ran out at a million miles an hour! I blame the pain and complete mental breakdown in the last 5k on her:)
Long term tri ambitions? I'm going to throw it out there and say Kona!
What other hobbies outside of triathlon? Not sure how you fit any more in.
Favourite triathlon race course/location? Has to be the Husky long course weekend. Its an awesome location and great for the family. Cant believe i'm going to miss out this year.
Heroes: Not sure I have heroes as such, but I do look up to my mates in the club that are achieving their goals by putting in the hard yards.
Favourite motto: I love listening to Jens Voigt, and love how he races. When your hurting in training/Racing I like to use a Jens classic "Shut up legs"
Tips/Inspiring comments for other triathletes: We are extremely lucky to be living and training on the Northern Beaches. I could not think of a better place to live and be involved in the sport. Every time you are out there with the sun on your back spare a thought for me on the trainer in my garage in sunny Wales:) We also have so much depth of talent in the club that it would be a waste not to use it so ask lots of questions. Also learn to love swimming! I finally enjoy heading to the pool.
A great day for me, and a good lesson that if you prepare well, plan carefully and most importantly follow the plan a good result will follow.
BY ALISTAIR GRAHAM
This was my first time racing in Busselton and from what I had heard, I was expecting heat, wind and flies. We got a sample of the last of these on the Friday as we drove to Busselton - we had a tyre blow out so pulled in to the side of the road and were covered in flies for the entire time it took to change wheels. I hoped that it wasn't a taste of things to come!
The day before the race was spent getting ready, resting and checking out Busselton. As a venue it's a great place, and we identified some spots for spectators. The course seems to have been designed with the spectators in mind, and I was looking forward to seeing the family regularly. Although it was hot and windy, the weather forecast for race day was looking very good - temperatures in the mid 20s and wind of about 25km/h. I didn't dare hope for good conditions as my previous Ironman in South Africa had seen terrible weather, and so I was a keeping everything crossed that the weather forecast was correct.
Race day dawned with perfect conditions. Very little wind, flat seas and very pleasant temperatures. There was talk around the start line that maybe this was the year that one of the Pro men could go under 8 hours, especially with the presence of Andreas Raelert. I got myself onto the beach and lined up a couple of lines from the front on the left, and got myself mentally ready for the day ahead. The gun went and we were off, into the clear blue water of Geographe Bay. The swim at Busso is beautiful, and you can see the bottom the whole way. This really helped to make the time go faster and helped me establish a rhythm, I simply imagined that I was doing a Manly - Shelley double with the club. I found some feet to follow and exited in 1:05.
Into T1 and onto the bike. My plan was to hold a pace and not to get overexcited at the start and go out too hard. We were all rested, tapered and ready to go, and keen to put in a good time on the bike. This meant that a lot of people head out of T1 like headless chickens and I didn't want to be one of them. I knew the Watts that I needed to consistently hold, and the nutrition plan I needed to follow, and I was determined not to deviate from this. I managed to do this, and found that as bike leg went, I was able to increase my power slightly and I started moving up through the field. The crosswinds were getting stronger on the return back into town, and by the last lap were affecting people. I managed to keep consistent with my power and was very happy to finish with a bike leg of 5:08. As I entered T2 I was greeted a familiar looking volunteer who shouted "Go Warringah, well done Al!". Thanks Bev.
Leaving T2 onto the run I saw the clock read 6:19. I did some quick maths and realised that I could go under 10 hours if I ran sensibly. So I ran within myself for the first 2 laps, soaking up the atmosphere and high fiving the family as I passed them. Onto the third lap and the long day was starting to bite, with very tired legs and hoping for the finish line to come soon. Bec Hoschke was shouting encouragement as I went past, and I spotted a few other familiar faces. Before I knew it I entered the finish shute, and saw the clock reading 9:48. I was so, so pleased with that time, so let out a good scream of celebration before crossing the line.
A great day for me, and a good lesson that if you prepare well, plan carefully and most importantly follow the plan a good result will follow. I met my family once out of recovery area, and we all went back to our accommodation and got showered, changed and returned to the Goose Pub for a meal and a cold beer - perfect. With full tummies we all went back to the finish line to welcome home the 15+ hour finishers and found a full blown disco party in action! One of my happiest memories of Bussleton will be cheering home the finishers while dancing "Blame it on the Boogie" with my 5 year old daughter. A great end to a great day.