Forster’s Hayden Smith has gained entry into the Ironman Triathlon World Championship in Hawaii following qualification in China.
The event, set to be held on October 14 on the island of Kona, consists of a 3.8 kilometre swim, a 180 kilometre bike ride and a 42 kilometre marathon run.
With temperatures set to reach 40 degrees on the day, Hayden understands it’s going to be a tough task.
“It’s an extreme event in extreme conditions,” Hayden said.
Hayden said the biggest challenge for some competitors is focusing on the times posted by other people, so he plans to tackle the Hawaii course on his own terms.
“The biggest mistake you can make is trying to mark yourself off other people,” Hayden said.
After withdrawing from the half ironman world championships in his home town of Queensland’s Sunshine Coast due to illness, Hayden competed in a half ironman in China where his 3rd placing qualified him for Hawaii.
To be in peak condition for the World Championship, Hayden must train up to 30 hours a week for five months. All this while balancing a young family and owning McDonalds Forster.
He credits his family and McDonalds staff for giving him the flexibility to train.
“Getting the best out of myself means 30 hours a week of training rain, hail or shine,” Hayden said.
Hayden is next set to take on Port Macquarie’s Ironman Australia event in May.