10 Mar 2020

Cameron Brown Grabs 6th at Ironman New Zealand

“My 23rd New Zealand Ironman ended in a 6th place finish. 10 years ago, I wouldn't have been happy with finishing in 6th place. Although when you’re just two months shy of your 48th birthday (as I am) and with only a limited 6 weeks of running in my legs due to a torn calf muscle, I can hold my head pretty high after this performance.”

“Race conditions were ideal with a flat Lake Taupo. 1,400 athletes toed the line in the 36th running of the second-oldest Ironman race in the world. For some reason my goggles decided to fog up just before the start and I couldn't see anything as the gun went off at 7:45am. I was forced to follow the feet of others and stopped a few times to try and see if my goggles would clear, but they didn't, so I just tried to sit behind an athlete and tap his feet so at least I knew I was following something! After 1500m, my goggles finally cleared somewhat so I tried to then take the lead to make up for the lost time at the start.”

“As I finally touched dry land I found myself 4mins down from the leaders, but was in good company with super bikers Joe Skipper and Phillip Koutny (both Top-10 in last year’s Hawaii Ironman World Championships). I knew I would need to stay with them for as long as I could to try and make up time to the leaders. We had taken a small chunk of time out, but it still sat at 3mins after 90km and that was the point I dropped off from the flying duo.”

“I managed to catch a few more athletes over the last 70km and finished the bike in 7th place. I was 12mins down on Skipper and Koutny, but was hopeful I could have a good run to peg back some time. My initial 20km were pretty good but the lack of running preparation was starting to tell as my legs began to slowly tire, I was now into 5th place with 7km to go but absolutely blew in the last 3km to be passed by Dougal Allan and I finished a respectable 6th.”

“As I continue to keep pushing my body every year it's amazing how fast the sport continues to develop. When I first won Ironman New Zealand in 2001, I finished in a time of 8:24:25hr. 19yrs later, I finished 6th in 8:14:36 as a 47yr old! At least I'm getting faster and faster!”

“I know I can go so much better after such a limited build up in my running preparation so I'm excited for the 2020 season and with no niggles after this race I know I'm good to go after a few days of recovery as my legs and body are still pretty sore! My next Ironman Will be the Asia-Pacific Championships in Cairns, Australia in June so I have lots of time to get my biggest strength of running back to its best.”

-Cameron Brown