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Caroline Livesey: IRONMAN Texas pre-race update #1

Caroline Livesey has agreed to be our ‘Brit Abroad’ for this weekend’s IRONMAN Texas, which also hosts the North American Championship event (meaning more prize money, more Kona points… and thus a top quality entry). We’ve also had a pre-race chat with Will Clarke.

Already this year we’ve followed Kimberly Morrison at IRONMAN 70.3 Dubai and Nikki Bartlett at IRONMAN South Africa, hoping to bring you a bit closer to the ‘inside track’ on how Britain’s best are preparing to race on the world stage.

In this first video update, Caroline looks back on some significant changes made over the winter to her own training and work environment, what motivates her to train and race as a professional and what she has been up to in the first few days of her time in The Woodlands.

More to come from Caroline later this week.

The TRIMORE Syros Triathlon – Greece: find out more…

Earlier in the year at the Triathlon Show: London (www.triathlonshowlondon.co.uk), one of the exhibitors was a relatively new race based in Greece, the Syros Triathlon (www.syrostriathlon.gr/en). We spoke to Anna from the organising team about what the event is Syros has to offer.

Taking place from 15th to 18th June this year, the second edition of this event will host Sprint and Olympic distance events, kids triathlons, open water swimming races, 5km and 10km runs… and an obstacle swimming challenge (more on that below!).

With a wide range of independent events taking place now within Europe, alongside the more commonly attended IRONMAN and Challenge Family series races, if you are looking for an alternative to combine sport with a holiday, then perhaps the Syros Triathlon would be a great option for you. The full 2017 event schedule can be found HERE.

2016 Winner – Alice Hector

There is a British connection too; British Pro athlete Alice Hector was the winner of the Syros Triathlon on its debut, and highly recommends the experience:

“Syros Triathlon is a real ‘destination’ race. It’s a small but perfectly-maintained Greek island three hours ferry ride from Athens. It sounds like a lot of travel, but the ferries are massive and actually very relaxing! Once you arrive, the town is immaculate: you walk on marble pavements, eat the freshest food and are surrounded by crystal water. You can cycle around the island easily in an hour, taking in its several secluded beaches and quiet back roads.

Alice Hector at Syros Triathlon 2016

“The town shuts down for the race and it’s a full weekend of festivities, with children’s races, motivational and educational speakers, and a fantastic party-style presentation.

“Well worth a visit, and making a holiday out of it too!”

Highlights from the inaugural 2016 edition of Syros Triathlon

TRIMORE Syros Triathlon 2017 Preview

Find out more at www.syrostriathlon.gr/en

Alice Hector at Syros Triathlon 2016

Women in Triathlon: The Giant Store special

The Giant Store St. Paul’s (www.giant-stpauls.co.uk), recently hosted a series of five triathlon special evenings from January through to March, which we’ve been covering here on Tri247. The final event of the series, and perhaps the best attended of all, was a Women in Triathlon special, held on Thursday 16th March.

Here we provide the full length video of the excellent panel discussion from the evening, which covered a wide range of topics, including fears about getting in to triathlon, experiences, gaining confidence and training tips.

The event was superbly hosted by Helen Murray (one of the voices of the Oxygenaddict Triathlon Podcast). We even had a live link in store to bring in input from Australia!

The Panel

A fantastic panel of athletes had been pulled together, from a Commonwealth Games medal winner, Kona Age-Group Champion, Britain’s oldest female Ironman finisher and more, to provide a wide topic of conversation and inputs from all perspectives. You can follow them all on Twitter via these links:

Meet Mary Wittenberg, Global CEO Virgin Sport

We are a great believer if you are going to do something you should do it with passion, and for Mary Wittenberg, the Global CEO of Virgin Sport (https://uk.virginsport.com), her passion has been running.

Starting off as a competitive marathon runner, then on to a successful career in Law, a return to sport saw her lead the New York Road Runners for 17 years. As well as being the first female Race Director of a major international marathon she also set up the World Marathon Majors Series.

We were fortunate to chat with Mary in London this week, a month before her latest venture with the Festival of Fitness, which will be held in Hackney on the 30th April. Paul Shanley caught up with Mary to find out more about her early career and what made her join Virgin Sport.

There is still time to enter the Hackney Festival of Fitness, which features the Hackney Half Marathon, at https://uk.virginsport.com/event/hackney-2017

You can find Mary and Virgin Sport on Twitter on these links:

Karl Alexander targets Outlaw Half “three-peat”

“I’m looking to three-peat at the Outlaw Half Nottingham”

At last weeks Triathlon Special at the Giant Store St. Paul’s, we spoke to long-time Tri247 contributor, Karl Alexander. A member of the UK ERDINGER Alkoholfrei team, Karl was on hand all evening to keeps all the attendees refreshed through the evening!

A specialist over the Middle and Long distances, the Outlaw series of triathlons from OSB Events has become the central pillar of his season – and will be once again in 2017.

Last year Karl retained his title at the Outlaw Half Nottingham after an epic race against Simon George, Karl only taking the lead practically in sight of the finish line. Check out the picture below for evidence… He will be back, and he wants to win it again!

Check out his interview above to find our more about his plans for 2017 and what he has been up to over the winter to be fitter and faster than ever before.

For more on the Outlaw Triathlon events, visit www.osbevents.com.

Outlaw Half Nottingham 2016: Karl Alexander and Simon George
Outlaw Half Nottingham 2016: Karl Alexander and Simon George

You can re-visit our report from the 2016 Outlaw Half Nottingham HERE, and read Karl’s own words from his perspective HERE.

Performance Team: the founders

Meet two-time Oympian Andy Baddeley and Team GB Olympic physiotherapist, Mark Buckingham, founders of Performance Team (http://www.performanceteam.co.uk)

Vicky Holland: “I really want to go to Tokyo”

Vicky Holland at the Triathlon Show: London 2017

Great Britain’s Vicky Holland achieved a sporting dream in 2016 at the Rio Olympic Games, winning the Bronze medal, following a head-to-head sprint finish with her great friend and long-time training partner, Non Stanford.

We spoke to Vicky at the weekend while at the Triathlon Show: London 2017 at the ExCel Centre.

During the interview we cover:

  • Her Olympic memories, six months on.
  • The ‘surreal’ feeling of an Olympic podium.
  • The contrast between ‘supporting’ at the Olympics and being a medal winner.
  • Meeting the Queen!
  • Leaving Leeds and re-locating to Bath.
  • Being “selfish” as an athlete.
  • Why she has no interest until long distance… until the week before Kona!
  • Working with High5 Nutrition

Watch the video above to find out more about Vicky’s plans over the next Olympic cycle.

Vicky Holland at the Triathlon Show: London with her Rio 2016 Bronze medal

Danny Mills: from football to triathlon

Ex-England footballer talks triathlon and the Brownlee brothers

Former Leeds United footballer, Danny Mills, also played 19 times for England at senior level – which included every minute of England’s 2002 World Cup finals tournament in Korea / Japan.

Having retired from football with injury at 32 years of age, following a long period of rehabilitation, Danny has taken on a series os sporting challenges. These have included running several marathons, even completing the Brighton Marathon as a wheelchair racer to raise awareness and money for charity.

Danny Mills and triathlon…

Danny discovered triathlon over the past couple of years and has since completing two Ironman 70.3 races… with a full-distance still on his radar.

On Friday (3rd February) Danny did a great job of hosting a Q&A with the Brownlee brothers (you can watch that in full HERE), at the five year HUUB anniversary event, and shortly after that I spoke to Danny to find out more about his passion for the sport, respect for the Brownlee brothers and find out about his own triathlon goals for 2017.

Danny Mills at IRONMAN 70.3 Staffordshire 2016
Danny Mills at IRONMAN 70.3 Staffordshire 2016

The Brownlee brothers: in-depth Q&A

The Brownlee brothers talk wetsuits, race plans, Olympics, SPOTY, Leeds United and more

Last Friday at the Engine Shed in Derby, the Brownlee brothers (www.thebrownleebrothers.com) were the star attractions at a packed event hosted by wetsuit brand HUUB to celebrate their fifth anniversary.

Having trusted the brand with their signature four years ago – at a time when the product was little more than an idea of the kitchen table of Dean Jackson – that decision has been vindicated, with another four year contract just signed, keeping them with the brand until 2020.

Danny Mills hosts…

The Q&A was very well hosted by former England and Leeds United footballer, Danny Mills. Now a keen triathlete himself with an Ironman on his radar, Danny covered a lot of areas with the Olympic Gold and Silver medallists.

Find out more about…

  • Why they first signed with a brand that barely had a product to offer them at that time
  • How racing will change for Jonathan, with Alistair not being at many of the WTS events this year
  • Why Alistair is not ruling out going for a third Gold in Tokyo
  • Jonathan’s views on the potential of the Olympics being a Sprint distance race
  • Why finishing second at SPOTY means “I’ve got a worse personality than Andy Murray”…
  • …and why winning SPOTY might not have been a good thing, “not sure I wanted to make a speech!”
  • Their passion for Leeds and Yorkshire
  • Why Jonathan is still “uncomfortable” about the events of Cozumel
  • Their “bucket list” races

And the biggest laugh of the day…

Jonathan on Alistair: “I work with Alistair, and he earns more than me…”

Alistair to Jonathan: “Yeah, but I do a slightly better job, don’t I?!”

The Brownlee brothers on stage with Danny Mills
The Brownlee brothers on stage with Danny Mills

Looking for sponsorship? Watch and learn!

HUUB founder Dean Jackson talks athlete sponsorship

“Build a relationship, become a friend… don’t just come with your hands out”

HUUB founder Dean Jackson has been involved in the triathlon industry for several decades now, across a range of blue chip brands even before he launched HUUB (www.huubdesign.com).

HUUB have just signed the Brownlee brothers to another four year contract – but Dean also support athletes of all levels from first-timers, not just those on the Olympic podium.

“Will you sponsor me?”

Having been on the end of thousands of “Will you sponsor me?” letters, emails and more, how do you stand out?

Before you start a “Dear Dean” request – be it to HUUB or any other brands – take some tips from Dean on making the right sort of approach with some simple advice from this video.

Mark Livesey: the Sub-9 hour veteran

British Age-Group athlete Mark Livesey is getting faster with age, achieving his goal of a Sub-9 hour IRONMAN in 2016. We spoke to him to find out more.

Lucy Gossage: don’t write me off yet!

While Lucy Gossage will be returning to work, part-time, in 2017… rumours that she is retiring are far from the truth! I spoke to the Duracell Bunny…

David McNamee looks ahead to the big race

The top British Male athlete at Kona 12 months ago, finishing in 11th, David McNamee has high hopes of moving into the top-10 this year.

He spoke to Joanne Murphy (www.tritalkingsport.co.uk) earlier this week about the changes to his approach to the race this year, hoping to arrive fresh and much stronger on the bike.

Susie Cheetham – “I’m a better athlete than last year”

“I’m a better athlete than last year… I hope I can show it”

Could it be a big, BIG year for Great Britain’s Susie Cheetham? Sixth on her Kona debut twelve months ago, she is confident in her physical abilities and hopes to be able to show that on Saturday.

Joanne Murphy (www.tritalkingsport.co.uk) chatted to Susie this week following the Pro briefing. Check out her pre-race thoughts.

Lucy Gossage – “When life gives you lemons…make lemonade”

Joanne Murphy (www.tritakingsport.co.uk) talks to the Duracell Bunny, Lucy Gossage in Kona ahead of Saturday’s IRONMAN World Championship 2016.

What do you do when you break your clavicle eight weeks before the biggest race of the year? You can give up, or… you can fight back.

Matt Russell – “I like to race. A lot…”

Matt Russell (USA) is one of the most prolific racers around.

When he starts from Dig Me Beach on Saturday it will be just two weeks since he finished third at IRONMAN Chattanooga to Marino Vanhoenacker (BEL).

An unconventional approach, perhaps – but one that Matt has confidence in. He spoke this week to Joanne Murphy (www.tritalkingsport.co.uk) about his approach to the race.

Lionel Sanders is “angry” & ready to race

Lionel Sanders (CAN) is one of the most exciting long-distance triathletes in the world.

He’s already won five IRONMAN 70.3 races in 2016, using his devastating bike and run prowess to crush the opposition. 14th last year in his debut, he’s back in a much stronger frame of mind and should go a lot better this time around.

Joanne Murphy (www.tritalkingsport.co.uk) managed to get some time with him this week and find out what he learned from last year, and why Craig Alexander has inspired his own IRONMAN journey.

Harry Wiltshire – “If you get it right, it defines your career”

Two years ago Harry Wiltshire made it to Kona after one of the most amazing points chases we’ve ever seen – all while qualifying as a Barrister and with a broken back!

He crossed the line that year in nine hours exactly. 2016 has been his best long-distance season by far, with wins at IRONMAN Vichy and IRONMAN 70.3 Weymouth, plus further podiums at IRONMAN 70.3 Dublin and IRONMAN 70.3 Staffordshire.

Joanne Murphy (www.tritalkingsport.co.uk) grabbed some time with Harry ahead of the Pro briefing.

Pre Kona chat with Jodie Swallow and James Cunnama

Having recently won the ITU Long Distance Triathlon World Championship for the second time in her career, Jodie Swallow most certainly has the skills to improve on her Kona-best of fourth two years ago.

Joanne Murphy (www.tritalkingsport.co.uk) grabbed a few moments with Jodie and her soon to be husband, James Cunnama (RSA), at the Pro briefing for Saturday’s IRONMAN World Championship in Hawaii.

Lucy Charles – “I wanted to show who’s boss”

While she is not racing the IRONMAN World Championship herself this year, Lucy Charles has already made headlines in Hawaii this week.

Quite possibly the best female swimmer in the sport, Lucy likes to beat the men too, “show them who’s boss!”. And not just any men, the top Pro’s, including Andreas Boecherer, Tim Don, David McNamee, Eneko Llanos, Trevor Wurtele and many more were left in her wake when she won – overall – the Ho’ala IRONMAN Training Swim last weekend (FULL RESULTS).

Winner of the 18-24 category last year, Lucy is raced as a Pro during 2016, making the podium at IRONMAN Lanzarote.

In Kona primarily to support her fiance Reece Barclay (watch our interview with Reece HERE), Lucy spoke to Joanne Murphy (www.tritalkingsport.co.uk) about her plans to return to race, as a Pro, in 12 months time.

David Pearce also spoke to Lucy immediately after her swim last weekend too:

Reece Barclay – “I love every moment”

On his first appearance at the IRONMAN World Championships last year, Reece Barclay made the Age-Group podium, collecting the coveted Umeke for finishing in fifth place in the 20-24 category.

That will be a much tougher task to match this time around, in his first year in the 25-29 division.

Joanne Murphy  (www.tritalkingsport.co.uk) spoke to Reece ahead of Saturday’s race.

Lucy Charles – racing Pro in 2016

Former swimmer Lucy Charles switched to triathlon after missing out in the Olympic trials & finished a double IRONMAN world-champion in 2015.

Spencer Smith interview

Spencer Smith talked to Annie Emmerson about his career, new ventures and future race plans

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