Yeppoon’s Richard Goodger has qualified to compete in the Hawaiian Ironman race.
Yeppoon’s Richard Goodger has qualified to compete in the Hawaiian Ironman race. Nikita Watts

Ironman on Hawaiian challenge

WHILE most people are enjoying a sleep-in on the weekend, Yeppoon ironman Richard Goodger is on the long road to Hawaii.

The Yeppoon local, who hails from Barcaldine originally, capped off seven years of hard work with a fifth place finish at the Port Macquarie Ironman last weekend.

Goodger completed the gruelling 3.8km swim, 180km ride and 42km run in 10 hours, 15 minutes and 27 seconds to finish fifth in the men's 45-49 age group, shaving more than an hour off his time last year – in the process qualifying for the for the pinnacle of the sport, the Ford Ironman World Championship later this year.

Against a field of 128 competitors in his age group alone, Goodger's astounding fifth-place qualified the Ergon Energy worker for a starting spot in the world championship event at Kailua-Kona, Hawaii on October 8.

Completed over 10 hours, Goodger said the key to sustaining a performance over such a long period of time was to break down the event into smaller, manageable pieces.

“You're really thinking about the leg you're on and getting through that leg,” he said.

“On the bike it was a two-lap course.

“So I was just thinking about getting to the end of each lap, and then once I'd finished it then you do the same on the run.”

Goodger's celebrations were short-lived following his qualification, with the Frenchville Frogs members already back into training ahead of the world championships.

Under the guidance of Frenchville Frogs coach Wayne Clifford, and with advice from former Hawaiian ironman competitor Peter Reaburn – who finished in seventh place in 2005, Goodger will progressively build up his training schedule leading up to the event, before tapering off to give himself the best possible chance at completing first, and then competing in the event.

“I have spoken to (Reaburn) in the past and I need to give him a call and get some advice off him,” he said.

Goodger plans to cover approximately 370km across the seven-day week, combining running, swimming, rowing and work on the bike with a couple gym session, on the road to a top 20 finish in Hawaii.

“To finish in the top 20 might be achievable,” he said.

“But, I don't know, it's such a long race things can go wrong. I might get a cramp 20km into the run and with 20-odd kilometres to run it's a long way.”

Don't miss The Morning Bulletin's wrap later this week of all the Frenchville Frogs Triathlon Club winners following the final round of the 2010/11 season last weekend.



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