Ironman World Championship target for Corinne after great result in Wales
IT WILL be Aloha, Hawaii for another Cirencester AC/Performance Cycles ace, Corinne Clark, after she qualified for next year’s Ironman World Championships on the black lava rock coast of Kona, writes Danny Hall.
Corinne, from Fairford, was in London supporting our local competitors at the World Triathlon Championships knowing that she achieved a significant personal sporting ambition the previous weekend.
Corinne qualified for Hawaii in October, 2014 when finishing second in her age group at Ironman Wales.
Compared to the sprint triathlon tackled by some of her friends and colleagues in London, the full Ironman is a beast of endurance – a 2.4-mile sea swim, followed by a 112-mile bike ride, topped off by a full marathon run of 26.2 miles.
And Corinne had a last-minute scare in preparation when diagnosed with a kidney infection forcing her to take two weeks off work (complete with antibiotics) and rest in the run-up to the event – not ideal preparation.
But, on the day, she tapped into her year-long training schedule of up to four hours a day to finish in a total time of 11hr 40min 37sec.
That put her in 181st place from more than 1,600 starters – and she came home ahead of a number of professionals.
"I went quite steady in both the swim and the bike ride, knowing that I had been quite ill and I was just four days from finishing my antibiotics," said Corinne.
"But I felt really good on the very hilly marathon.
"I had won my only previous Ironman (Bolton 2012) which qualified me for last year’s World Championship in Hawaii, but I could not afford to go.
"I started work at Performance Cycles last November and they have been very supportive, giving me a bike, and I do not intend to miss out this time."
The 28-year-old has been an all-round sportswoman, riding ponies from the time she could walk and representing the county at both hockey and netball.
She was prompted to take up the triathlon during a spell working as a lifeguard at the Cirencester Leisure Centre.
"I worked there until it had to be closed down due to the floods and I was inspired by watching the distance swimmers training in the pool," she said. "Soon after, I also joined Cirencester AC."
The original Ironman challenge on Hawaii 35 years ago drew just 15 brave souls. The last page of their three-page set of instructions read: "Swim 2.4 miles! Bike 112 miles! Run 26.2 miles! Brag for the rest of your life!"