Dublin calling…

A very brief post to wish my mate Ciaran the very best of luck in the Dublin Half Ironman, or 70.3, as they prefer to brand it. Alas, this race came a little too soon for me, but now of course I wish I was taking part. This is a classic case of the Oisin Syndrome. (You can read about that here). It all kicks off this Sunday.

The Ironman iconic brand. Almost inevitably, the shamrock has been added to make it, em... Irish. Begorra!
The Ironman iconic brand. Almost inevitably, the shamrock has been added to make it, em… Irish. Begorra!

It’s only now, listening to some of the news media in the build up to the race that I learn that over half of the competitors are doing their first ever half-iron this weekend. In my head, when it was announced last year that Dublin was getting first the Half and then the Full Ironman the following year, the whole event seemed to be pitched for elite athletes. Maybe that was just the power of the brand. There’s something about that iconic M. I’ve only done three triathlons to date – two Sprints and an Olympic – but green as I am, I’ve seen those Ms tattooed onto calves. Those calves are usually well-toned, and moving past me at pace. It never occurred to me that I should enter the Dublin event. Oh well, too late now. But I still have Ireman to look forward to next month.

The sea swim is in Dún Laoghaire, south of the city centre, and then the bike heads through the heart of the capital and out into Kildare County. At around mile 46 it hits the top end of Leixlip, where I live, so we will get a chance to hang out where the roads are closed and hopefully see Ciaran as he whizzes past. Though from experience with marathons and other large races, it’s remarkable how one runner looks very like the next after a few miles. Throw them on a bike with a helmet and dark glasses, and the chances of recognition are slim to none. But we’ll do our best and shout encouragement at them all as they pass. It’s a section of road I train on regularly, so I know it well. More reason to have done the dame thing… don’t get me started!

If all goes well, we will head into Phoenix Park and hopefully get a chance to really soak up the atmosphere. Hope the weather holds. It’s a great showcase for the town, and of course, the organisers will be hoping all goes well in the lead up to next year’s full monty. I won’t be doing that either though… my plan is to do the Hardman in Kerry.

Please, knees. Just stay with me for another year. That’s all I ask!

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