Race torture worth it after long wait for a win
TRIATHLON: As he savoured his first Australian championship in 18 years in Port Macquarie on Sunday, Tewantin's David Dellow had his sights firmly fixed on the Ironman World Championship at Kona.
But first he plans to celebrate by "lying in the fetal position” and eating some "crappy” food for a couple of days.
And while he may have joked about that, he was dead serious about how much the win, following a 226km torture test, meant to him.
At 38, Dellow has overcome adversity numerous times to stay in the sport.
Bouts of Ross River Fever, shoulder, knee and hip surgery would be enough to sink many good careers.
But after his first Ironman victory in five years (Cairns 2012), and first Aussie title since winning at Mooloolaba in 1999, all roads lead to Kona.
"It's pretty much the only reason I'm in the sport,” he said.
"It's always the target. I want to have a good race at (Ironman) Cairns (in five weeks) and then definitely target the world title again.”
Dellow came out of the bike leg about seven minutes behind Clayton Fettell, and alongside defending champion and 70.3 world champion Tim Reed.
"I knew I was in for a ding-dong battle,” Dellow said.
"Clayton is a serious cyclist but I can usually peg a fair bit back from him on the run,” he said.
"Getting off the bike with Tim was always going to be a huge challenge. He won the 70.3 (World Championship) at Mooloolaba just seven or eight months ago.
"He's a serious runner,” Dellow said.
He crossed the line first in 8hr 30min 15min 36sec, more than six minutes ahead of Reed.