This was my 3 rd attempt at the Port Macquarie Ironman. Ever since I was a teenager and would
watch the Forster Ironman (on World Wide of Sports), I had dreamed of racing in the ironman and
finishing in under 10 hours. Something I thought only real athletes could do!
The Port Macquarie course is a very tough one – regarded to include the most challenging cycle leg
of each of the Australian Ironman races. This year the 70.3 race was run also on the same day.
Project M was well represented with 5 of us competing in the full Ironman and 5 in the 70.3.
Before I begin the race report I would like to thank Nathan for his invaluable help once again. His
programs, his commitment to joining us in training and his encouragement and support throughout
the whole experience really makes the difference. The Project M team is extremely strong and this is
due to Nathan’s good work. I’d like also to make mention of the great group of guys that I was
fortunate to train with week in and week out. I know it would not have been possible to do the
ironman nearly as well as I did without these guys. In particular, a special mention to Jye, who has
been a close friend of mine for the past 25 years or so. Without his support this year I would most
certainly have withdrawn from the race (8 – 10 weeks before race day) after a knee injury. Jye
encouraged me to persevere and convinced me to run with him at training. This forced me to keep
up my running and got me there in the end.
Below is an account of my experience in the lead up to and on the day of the ironman at Port
Pre-Race: My lead up to the Ironman Triathlon was a good one (apart from a knee injury as
mentioned earlier). I made a real effort this time to join in as many group cycles as I could. This no
doubt helped my cycling. Unfortunately, Brad Robinson and Pete Calder were involved in a
devastating bike accident in the National Park 5 or 6 weeks out from the race. This forced them to
miss a couple of weeks of training. Remarkably, and a testament to their strength and
determination, they both stuck at it and made it to race day.
Race day: It was an early start with transition opening at 4:30am. Conditions were surprisingly good
at that time, with minimal wind and nice smooth waters for the swim. Unfortunately, the weather
turned at about 11:30am with the wind picking up and reasonably heavy rain on and off throughout
the rest of the race.
Swim (3.8km): The swim was a rolling start. I definitely prefer this – seems to be a minute or two
quicker for me with this type of start. The 5 of us began the swim together. After a couple of
hundred metres I settled into a nice pace and tried to keep my breathing relaxed. I didn’t see any of
the other guys till I reached the weir (where we get out of the water briefly then re-enter - 1.7km
into the swim). At this point, I heard a voice behind me. It was Jye who had exited at precisely the
exact same second as myself. We had been swimming similar times in the lead up so this was quite
appropriate. Jye took off from me after this and beat me out of the water by about half a minute.
Great work by Jacob who did an awesome swim time of 54:52, Pete 56:45 and Brad 59:08. I was last
out of the water but we had all done well – getting under the 1hr mark.
Cycle (180.2km): I always look forward to the cycle. This is my strongest leg of the three. The
conditions were fantastic for the first lap, 90km. My plan was to take it easy for the first lap but I felt
good (after taking it a bit easier in the swim). I got to the 90km mark in 2hr26 so was happy with this
but also a bit worried that perhaps I had gone out too fast and would pay for it in the 2 nd lap. The
final 90km was much tougher with the wind picking up and tonnes of rain! It was quite a lonely ride
actually and I was happy to get to the end. It was nice to see the other Project M guys out there on
the course – kept me going.
I couldn’t let it go without mentioning my fast transition from bike to run. Normally it takes me close
to 3 minutes. This time I left the shoes on the bike and changed into joggers quickly (some good
advice by Jye). I was on the run course in 1min24sec. A quicker transition then race winner!!
Run (42.2km): After a good swim and bike leg, I was hoping for a good run. Given that I started the
run at 6hr6min or so I was fairly confident that I could reach my aim of getting under 10hrs. As I
always seem to do, I started the run a bit quicker than I should have. This, added to the fact that I
worked hard on the bike, meant that I paid the price for it in the second half of the run.
Nevertheless, I had left myself enough time and I finished in 9hrs52. I was very excited.
Awesome run by Jye who ran a 3hr32 marathon.
Overall, I thoroughly enjoyed this triathlon and was very grateful for all of the encouragement I was
given going into the race. I knew I had trained quite well, which gave me some extra confidence on
As mentioned earlier, it is great to have such a fantastic group of athletes at Project M. It really is the
difference and makes it so much easier (and enjoyable) to work towards achieving whatever it is you
Results below (in alphabetical order):
Name Age Group Cat Place Overall Place Time
Jye Cajar 35 - 39 29 th 117 th 10:17:16
Jacob Payne 30 - 34 17 th 127 th 10:20:09
Brad Robinson 30 - 34 53 rd 527 th 11:55:09
Jason Shoebridge 40 – 44 12 th 61 st 9:52:46
Note: Unfortunately, Pete Calder fell ill during the ride and was forced to withdraw at the 90km
Name Age Group Cat Place Overall Place Time
Jarrod Boyd 25 – 29 3 rd 13 th 4:22:20
Chris Hamilton 25 - 29 20 th 98 th 4:47:49
Tegan Davies 30 – 34 3 rd 134 th (7 th Female) 4:54:26
Carolyn Dews 45 – 49 4 th 193 rd (20 th Female) 5:04:45
Mark Duncan 35 – 39 50 th 356 th 5:31:43
Ilyas Musker 35 – 39 57 th 402 nd 5:41:48