Greg Taylor of New Zealand swam, cycled and ran the perfect Warrior Half Ironman race at Lalomanu on Saturday to win it outright.
He had a big eight-minute lead at the end of the 2km swim, and extended it in the Half Marathon run.
He was slightly challenged in the 90 km cycle leg by Warrior Sprints champion Marcus Boshier, but held to still lead going into the run. Once on the trot, the young doctor from New Plymouth restored the 8-minute gap and some to win in 4hrs 56mins. Boshier finished second in 5hrs 9mins.
It wasn’t all trouble-free for the NZ representative. His competition bike was damaged in flight to Samoa. He rode the bike leg on a borrowed machine.
The Warrior Race this year had a change of swim site. That is usually held at Lalomanu Beach, but with high tide right on start time it was safer to hold it at the smooth waters of Namu’a Island lagoon with the 2km swim a straight line to the island and back.
The bike ride this year went all the way to the top of Afulilo for 45kms. The second 45kms was completed in laps between Lalomanu and Amaile. The half Marathon run was kept within a loop course at Lalomanu.
Third across the line was Mike Lynch of Wellington, followed by John Hunter of Auckland who also competed in the race last year. A very gutsy effort from John Clarkson to finish in 6hrs 43mins almost two hours after the winner. The sole female in the race Frida Sumardjo of Auckland found the heat too tough and had to withdraw.
In the shorter race Beat the Heat it was Kiwi age-group representatives who won the men and the women’s races. Nick Newman won the men’s race, and Lucy Cotterill the women’s race where she also finished second overall. Newman and Cotterill used the Warrior Race for their preparations for the ITU Age Group World Championships in the Gold Coast in September.
The best of local athletes was Elia Lasa who finished third in Beat the Heat, followed by Ty Samasoni Maoga who pipped Ty Feekings in the last 300 meters of the Run.
Warrior Race Results
Greg Taylor, Swim 28mins 21secs (to Namu’a Island return), Bike 90kms 2hrs 47mins, Run Half Marathon, 1hr 32mins
Marcus Boshier, Swim 38:56, Bike 3hrs 33mins, Run 1hr 36mins
Mike Lynch (Wellington) Swim 44:08, Bike 2:52:52, Run 2:11:00
Beat the Heat
Lucy Cotterill (Wellington) Swim 13mins 43secs, Bike 1hr 44mins, Run 56mins
Kat Riley, Swim 18mins 37secs, Bike 2:32:00, Run 1:17:00
Nick Newman (Auckland) Swim 13:24, Bike 1:36:36, Run 50:00
Elia Lasa (Samoa) Swim 19:09, Bike 1:54:01, Run 59:00