Flora Duffy *File photo
Flora Duffy *File photo

It was a busy weekend abroad for Bermuda’s triathletes.

Flora Duffy continued her impressive start to the season as she demolished a strong pro field at Lake Las Vegas XTerra Triathlon.

Meanwhile, junior Erica Hawley took on many of Europe’s best elite juniors (aged 16-19) in the International Triathlon Union’s race in Portugal. 

In difficult conditions, Hawley was well off her best time over the distance finishing in 58th place in 1hr 15 mins and 34 secs but mother Julia Hawley says she is already analyzing her race and chalking it up to experience.

When I first took up triathlon in the 1980’s there were very few triathletes in Bermuda who were prepared to take on the challenge of a longer distance triathlon such as an ironman. 

But since then more and more triathletes in Bermuda have taken on the challenge and pleasingly there seems to be as many women as men in their ranks. The introduction of the 70.3 or half ironman (1.2 mile swim, 56 mile bike and 13.1 mile run) has seen an even larger increase in the number of  long distance sufferers!

This past weekend saw Tim Goodyer, Alex Wilberz, Jen Wilson and Kandis Matthews completing Ironman 70.3 Florida — their first long distance —  whilst Mark Robinson and Kristen Palmer crossed the finish line in Ironman 70.3 New Orleans.

Palmer was an impressive 6th out of 61 in the 25-29 age group in 5hrs. 31 mins 13 secs whilst Robinson was an excellent 16th / 118 in the 30-34 age group in 4.47.44.

Despite the Florida heat and a two-mile hill at the run start, all four of Bermuda’s participants finished in respectable times.

Goodyer was 58th out of 218 in the 35-39 age group in 5.10.17 with Wilberz 42/80 – 40-44 age group in 6.14.55, Wilson 26/90 – 35-39 age group in 5.49.32, Matthews finishing just behind Wilson in 5.52.26 for 28/90 in the 35-39 age group.

So, if you see a few weary triathletes around town you will know why!