Ben Selier

Ben Selier, RSA

Coach’s remarks: Benny said it was cool to share this race report with you all, there always great reading and we all learn from it.

Race Report: So my First race report (my first big race for that matter). So except for the fact that we had gale force winds 17deg C temperature potholes everywhere it was a great day( i will let the other guys fill you in on the conditions). I set out with agreed strategy and stuck by it no matter what. Now normally i would just tank the bike and then hold on in the run, but seeing way to many KONA clips i realized i need to become a runner so hence the new strategy, nothing more than 75-80% on the bike (no matter what) then run 5min km’s all the way. So off to the start we went, got there and i have a flat front tire – oh well get the pump from the bike shop and WTF the tire does not inflate.  the bike shop borrowed me another wheel (great guy i thought) anyhow borrowed wheel blue toes and red nose we stood waiting for the swim start.

Off i went to what i can say was the worst swim of my life, i just could not find a lane eventually chickened out and went to the outside, did a few minutes of breaststroke and carried on disappointing 36:48 swim i was aiming for a sub 33min  – from now on Oman team is going to try and copy the JBR swims!!!

T1 done in 4min’s on the bike and out i went, first 5km done at an average of 42kmph  (got carried away a bit), then slowed down to a 33kmph average – 2:45 on the bike thats all you want!! and that was my mantra the whole day – man that was hard i love biking and the course and weather was made for me, i was having a sunday cruise on the bike but told myself its all going to pay off in the end.  Went past Stephanie who was in all sorts of pain(ITB issues) and then i saw lisa who was swearing at the powers up there about the wind. so all and all a uneventful bike ride.(expect for the guy who crashed at 60kmph going through the tunnel – we learned later that he had died)

T2 done in 4min – on the run, now the strategy was to go out at 11kmph and then work my way up find a rhythm and stick to it – Well the patience on the bike paid off, out of T2 running 12-13kmph and feeling really good, first lap done and i am feeling strong, saw Claire(one of the Oman team) ran beside her for a while she seemed to be in some pain and needed some support, off i went again picking people off one by one – Great feeling normally i am the one in pain and suffering on the run, went past Steph who at this stage was in a world of hurt, walking the full 21km with a leg that just doesn’t want to bend, and a hundreds of drunk Belgium’s shouting, walking  is cheating to her, spend a few minutes with her and off i went, thinking tank it get this race done then you can still catch steph and at least walk her last lap with her, so there i went man a great feeling finished in 1:46min – best i ever ran on fresh legs was 1:37. Very happy with the result but also after 5min quite pissed off i was feeling great no pain no stiffness i can do this all over again. Stood at the finish for a while and the Mr National came in what a race – i got my ass handed to me by a 45year old !!!!  well done Guy what a race man, we spent a few minutes talking and then Steph came in for her last lap, i thought screw the rules i am running with her, ripped of my timing chip and went for another 7km run with her – i think by that time her leg was dead because we actually ran the last 7km none stop (i have one though wife i tell you)Well she finished her first 70.3 and thats what we were therefore, a finishers medal.

We all stood at the finish waiting for everyone to come in once we all finished we headed down to T2 to get our kit, as i walked in flashed my number a guy comes up to be and gives me by bag which we checked in at the start saying my bike is gone and all my kit is gone as well – wrong thing to say to a south African – anyhow nothing to do now about a it – to the hotel showered – wrote a belter of a email to the race organizer swearing i would come after him his children and their grand children if i do not have my bike back in the morning, then the light came on – they are all at the slot allocations – got a 15euro taxi to the town hall and walked in ready for war – as i got there Guy and Venny was there all smiles seems a lot of people did not show, so there i stood waiting for this crap to finish so i can have my say, so to cut the story short, i got a slot for vegas in my age group met the events organizer, who told me the bike was safely locked away in his van (seemed the bike shop wanted their wheel back and did not want to leave my bike standing in the road without a front tire) so ran back to T2 got my bike carried the bike for 3km to the hotel !!!  and then off to the square where i met up with everyone enjoying our good fortune. so now i have a slot for vegas – what to do! go to vegas and come dead last in my age group or toughen up and give the 45years a go!!  well 45days to go to race day.

Coach you’re the man – it was the best feeling ever running and picking people off, finishing strong and most of all having a blast doing it. Next step – Vegas and then a sub 11:00 Taupo.