Race Report: Chrissie Viljoen – MiWay Sun City Triathlon

The MiWay Sun City Triathlon series on Sunday was my first taste at 70.3 Ironman distance triathlon. Although nervous I was looking forward to the experience.

The water temperature allowed for a wetsuit legal swim, something a ‘non-swimmer from the Free State’ truly appreciated. The men started 2 minutes ahead of us and we had to navigate our way through the back-markers doing anything from backstroke to doggy-paddling. And I thought my day would be tough..

A quick glance at the heart rate monitor, I was super happy to exit the water in under 33 minutes for the 1.9km swim. Not anyday going to challenge Mr Le Clos in the water, bur by far my best swim in competition.

The transition area were about a kilometer away, all uphill and after a lengthy wrestling match to get the wetsuit off and the cycling gear on, I was ready to tackle the 2 x 45km out and back cycle route.

The bike is usually where I feel most comfortable, but the lack of spending time on my time trial bike was quickly showing the cracks in my armor. Towards the end of the second lap I could feel the legs were less than happy with the situation.

Glad to see the back of the cycle but also a bit apprehensive about the 21km run ahead. The route profile confirmed what I was told – it is one of the more difficult 70.3 runs in the country due to the undulations. Most of the run is around the golf course and although beautiful scenic wise it was punishing on already tender legs. The second lap seemed easier and I reeled in quite a few women on the run.

It was pure relief to see the last downhill towards the finish. I had no idea where I was in terms of the competition and it was a nice surprise to finish first in my age category (40-45) at my first 70.3 attempt in a time of 5:26.

Next one is Durban 70.3 Ironman and if all goes well hopefully a qualifying slot for 2018 World 70.3 Championships in Port Elizabeth.

Thank you Keyhealth Nevarest team for making my dreams possible!