IM Philippines 2018

Ironman Philippines 2018 – Another podium result and one step closer to Kona!

The 2018 edition of IM Philippines was the first time they have run the full distance event in the region. With over 1600 athletes lining up over the weekend, everyone was gearing up to tackle the weather and conditions that Subic Bay can deliver. The forecast was for temps in the high 30’s and standard maximum humidity! The locals and organisers have great passion, and this shined through on race day with so much support and a very well run event.

Beach start – sprinting into the 30deg water. Pic : MultisportPH

Race morning was the typical warm and humid temperatures as predicted, and the swim course was flat and calm. The male pro’s started 30mins after the 70.3 event, and we soon caught the back markers and dodged our way around the first loop. I had a good start, and managed to get a small gap by the first buoy – around 400m in. This gap grew steadily and through out the rest of the 3.8km swim leg I managed to build a lead of around 4mins heading into T1. This earned me the quickest swim of the day clocking just over 51mins. The water was close to 30deg, so we all had to be cautious not to push too hard early on. I found the swim pace was comfortable, and it was nice to be in control of the effort and not having to concentrate on chasing others or surging.

Transtion 1 was a 1km run from the sand to our bikes, and half of this was straight uphill.

Starting the bike with a nice lead. Pic : Anthony Yu

Out onto the bike, I held a steady lead throughout the first 70kms, and around this point Nick Baldwin and Freddie Lampret were starting to close the gap. We came together at the 100km mark, I stopped to grab my special needs bottle and the 2 of them got away on the long descent. I was happy to stick to my steady plan, and eventually caught up and passed Freddie again around 120km. Nick was riding strong, and cruised into T2 with a 5min lead. Cameron Brown was about 3mins back from me starting the run, so the pressure was on.

The weather on the bike was crazy – the first half was quite warm and humid as the sun was coming up, and then some black clouds rolled in. It started pouring down causing some surface flooding and the winds picked up for a solid headwind slog back into town.

This settled down again as we arrived into transition 2, and you could tell it was going to get warm again as the marathon was about to start.

All done in 3rd place. Pic : Anthony Yu

Nick and I were running a similar pace for the first 10kms or so, and Cam bridged up and came by me around the 12km mark. He was hovering around 1-2mins ahead for the next hour and we were all separated by less than 1min 45sec at about the 25km mark! I was feeling good and picked it up a bit, although Nick and Cam managed to lift also (I think we all were slowing down, but the effort was lifting!). Cam almost caught Nick although the final 10km really heated up and we stayed as it was through to the finish. Some great close racing all day!

 

1st place – Nick Baldwin      –        8:50

2nd place – Cameron Brown   –     8:56

3rd place – Simon Cochrane   –     8:58

 

Once again, my race plan didn’t involve power or pace targets, although in the heat I had some heart rate zones to keep an eye on – Heart rate doesn’t lie, and it’s a fine line between just right, and slightly too hard when racing in the heat. I managed to not walk one step in the marathon which was a pre-race goal and plan, I focused on steady pacing and grabbing water at each aid station on the fly. I handled the heat a lot better at this race and put this down to a very focused heat prep build up. Fire me a message if you are keen to hear how I did this, and if you need any help building up to some hotter races this season!

Podium presentation. Pic : AsiaTRI.com

It was a great event to be a part of and it was good to see so many kiwis over there racing – a nice change from the cold weather setting in back home! A big thanks to the events team who made us feel welcome all week and organised all the transfers / meetings seamlessly!

 

My sponsors and supporters are great as always, and are a huge part of my team that I couldn’t do with out!

CEEPO BICYCLES / ORCHARD GOLD / ST PIERRE’S SUSHI / SMITH OPTICS

 

Its always exciting and motivating knowing that so many people and family are tracking the race back home.

Talk soon,

 

Simon.

 

 

 

 

 

Ironman New Zealand – 2018

Training and racing had been going great over the summer and I was looking forward to lining up for my 27th Ironman race. (9th race at Ironman Taupo). I knew my form in each discipline had taken a step up and I was looking forward to executing a race I knew I had in me. I had decided prior to the race that I wouldn’t use a bike computer or run watch at all, as over the last couple of years of racing in the Professional field, it is a lot more clear that it is more about reacting to the race and other athletes, and less about a steady Time Trial effort. I knew my bike and run were good and that my internal pacing is usually spot on. Time to trust my body and the hard work form the previous months of training!

This year the weather was great, just some light winds and looking like a warm afternoon – we were set for a quick day!

Set for a nice fast day!

 

Goal for the swim : Strong start – nail the first 400m, make the front pack, and swim on feet to conserve energy.

This year I decided to start over to the left to have some clear water at the start. Dylan McNeice, Braden Currie and Callum Millward had a similar idea, although it was still well spaced out for us with most other Pro men cramped over by the right hand buoy. Had a strong start and after 200m or so we drifted right and ‘met up’ with the other quick swimmers who joined to make the front pack. I could see all of the swimmers I wanted to be with were there, and settled in for a great swim.

49min 11sec – 1:16/m pace

 

Goal for T1 : Hard running and quick out on to the bike.

Great transition, legs felt good and raced up the stairs, dumped wetsuit in the bag and off to bike, helmet on and out!  (2min 52sec)

Powering home over the last 20km. Pic by Bevan McKinnon

 

Goal for the bike : Start strong, and don’t be afraid to push the pace and follow some early moves. Position myself well in the front pack to make sure I don’t get dropped. 

This year the first section of the bike wasn’t quick at all, I was behind Mike Phillips and Braden, and no one was really looking to push too hard. The pace rolled on as we were caught by Cam Brown and Joe Skipper at the 45km turn and from there the tempo had definitely lifted. There were a few surges and I got strung off the back of the group a couple of times and hard to really fight to get back on. This is where I decided to go to the front and not drop back more than a couple of guys. Terenzo, Joe and Mike got away from the front group around 75km and managed to build a solid gap on the 2nd lap. I stayed near the front and felt great, lifting the effort during the last 20kms when I could tell everyone was getting a bit tired. I lead the group into T2 and was looking forward to the run. Great first race on my new Ceepo Viper-R, very comfortable position and could stay aero all day!

4hrs 31mins – 39.9km/h average. 

 

 

Goal for T2 : Smooth and controlled. 

Far from it! Ran into T2 and collected bag from the volunteer.. emptied bag and realized they had given me the wrong bag (cams bright orange shoes fell out instead of my green Sauconys). Had to run back and find my bag in the line up and then back to business. (1min 42sec)

 

Heading out on the run. Pic by Korupt Vision for Australian Triathlete Magazine

 

Goal for the run : Start strong and run the first lap by feel, dig deep during the last lap.

I found my self exiting transition just in front of Cam Brown, Callum Millward, and Dylan McNeice. Cam quickly bridged up to me and as he went to go past I decided to go with him and see how the pace felt. We were running around 3:40/km for the first 10km, and this was feeling great. The headwind back into town started to take its toll and around 11km I decided to ease back slightly and Cam carried on. (running a 2:41!) The second lap was tough but I just focused on getting some nutrition in and holding good form. As I turned in town for the final time (28km) I could see Dylan and Callum only a couple of mins back and looking strong. I really wanted to finish strong so decided to keep pushing and not look back. I got back into a good rhythm, and picked the pace up slightly for a strong finish.

2hrs 56mins – 4:11/km pace

Final push for home. Great shot from Mitch Buckley

 

 

Overall – 8hrs 21mins – 7th Professional Male. 

 

Massive thanks to my sponsors, family and supporters.  I couldn’t do this sport with out you. And to my wife Larisa, who at the time of me writing this is 6 days over due with our first child. Your support over the Ironman weekend was amazing and I am excited for the next big event!

My athletes looking nice and relaxed the day before the race!

My Coached athletes also had a great day out, and it was awesome to be able to get out on course after I was done to cheer them home! Its been great watching them all progress in the build up and I really enjoy the process of customising the specific plan for each athletes goals!

I have a few spots left for coaching new athletes, so get in touch via my contact form or email simon@simoncochrane.net to chat about some options!

Happy training, and talk soon!

 

2018 Port of Tauranga Half Ironman

 

The Tauranga Half Ironman is a favourite race for many kiwi athletes to kick off the new year with. It is usually a nice warm summers day with great crowd support, a fast bike, and a challenging run!

 

Pilot Bay – Swim course with Mount Maunganui in the background

 

The forecast this year was for wind and rain, although as race day dawned the sun was out and we were in for a scorcher, along with some stiff winds out on the course.

The start went well for me, but I found my self in no-mans land behind the quick front pack of 6 guys (including eventual 1st and 2nd place finishers Dylan McNeice and Mike Phillips), but well ahead of the main group behind. Exiting 1min down from the front, it was going to be a tough task to reel in the group of 6 on my own.

(Swim split – 26:35) – 1:20/100m pace

 

Swim exit caught by Mark Robotham

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I got settled in to a solid rhythm on my bike and was joined by Cam Brown and Dan Plews around the 30km mark. The pace was on as we pushed hard right back to T2. The front group had splintered, and guys were dropping off over the final stages into the headwind.

(Bike split – 2:11) – 41km/h Average

Flying out of T2 trying to keep Cam Brown in sight

 

 

 

A brutal pace set by Cam Brown out onto the run course had Dan and I on the ropes, although we had now moved up into 4th and 5th place on the road. A battle with Dan around the base track and newly installed stair section each lap was where I managed to gain a bit of time and run in for a strong finish in 4th place. Very happy with my form leading into Ironman NZ in 6 weeks time.

(Run split – 1:21) – 3:47/km Average