PHIL Tudor is the first to admit he’s a little lucky to be on a plane to Quebec, Canada, in September next year.
The Orange Cycle and Triathlon Club member finished 15th at the 70.3 half-ironman at Port Macquarie last Sunday, but will race for Australia at the Mont Tremblant 70.3 Ironman, the location for next year’s world championship, after becoming one of two roll down beneficiaries in the male 45-49 age category.
Usually the first and second fastest in each age group qualify for the world championships, but if either of those two aren’t available to attend the positions to race on the world stage are then filled via a roll down.
In Tudor’s case, when both the first and second place finishers in his division didn’t put their hand up to go to the world championships the door was left open.
The opportunity arose and, lucky or not, Tudor is rapt to be tackling the world championship.
“Three of us stood up,” Tudor said looking back at the moment the roll down began.
“One of them was the third fastest in our age so he went through and I was lucky I was the next fastest who stood up.”
Brutal wind and temperatures in excess of 30 degrees made the conditions at this year’s Port Macquarie event some of the harshest encountered.
Still, Tudor completed the 70.3 kilometre event in five hours 12 minutes and 35 seconds, good enough for 15th in his age division and 226th overall.
“It was a tough day. It was windy, there was a current in the swim ... even the pros were a minute-and-a-half slower than what they usually are,” he said, completing the swim in 35.41, the bike leg in 2:45.28 and the half-marathon in 1:45.21.
“On last year’s race, I was slower in the swim but quicker on the bike. I’ve been doing a bit of work on the bike but I haven’t been doing much running over winter. My legs have been crook and with about five to go I slowed right up.”
Tudor said he’ll do a little more running training before competing in the Forster half-ironman before Christmas, but other than that, won’t alter his training regime too much before Canada and the “fantastic opportunity” he now owns.
“It’s still representing,” he said, looking forward to donning the green and gold.
“There’s not many sports where they throw everyone in with the pros and the semi-pros. There will be some pointy end guys there.
“The is the first year it’s been held outside of the States. I think the last couple have been in Las Vegas and to be honest, if it was there again I probably wouldn’t have gone.
“I’ll take the family over, we’ll treat it as a bit of a holiday, see a bit of Canada and the States ... basically it’s the experience.
“To snag a world championship on a roll out ... it’ll be a great race.”