YESTERDAY’S warm conditions didn’t phase Michelle Gailey.
“I prefer it hot,” the 30-year-old Darwin resident said after winning the women’s section of the Sufferfest triathlon event yesterday.
“Being from Darwin I’m used to it. The conditions today were pretty tame compared to what we get back home. They were perfect for racing though.”
Gailey completed the gruelling course in four hours, 22 minutes and four seconds, and said she found the course tough and challenging.
It was Gailey’s first visit to Warrnambool and she said the short and sharp hills on the run leg along the foreshore promenade and the long and steep Hopkins Point Road hill during the bike leg were testing. “Each leg had it’s own challenges, Sufferfest certainly lived up to it’s name,” she said.
“In the swim it was hard to see where you were going because the sun was right in our eyes.
“Then the hill on the ride, we did it four times. The first time was fine, the second time was OK and then it just got worse from there.
“Those short little sharp hills in the run leg were testing as well. You just had to deal with it and push through.
“The second time down the run circuit was a little bit easier because I knew what to expect, and I was counting them down as I went along.
“The conditions were great. There was no strong wind that I hear Warrnambool is famous for, and competing in sunshine is much better than in the cold and wet.”
Gailey has been competing on the professional Ironman circuit since 2011, after taking up the sport in 2006. She finished the 2012 season ranked 25th and said preparations were now in full swing for the 2013 season.
“This was a good way to blow out a few cobwebs.
“I started heavy training again last week, so it was good to have a bit of a hit out before the season begins.
“There will be no recovery from this either. I’ll be out on another training run later this afternoon.”
Gailey said her plans were to compete in smaller distance triathlons in Asia this year.
“Racing in Asia was a highlight in my first years. I attempted my first ironman in Langkawi, Malaysia, so I’m looking forward to getting back over there again,” she said.