Post Race Report :: by Ian Dunning – Ironman Vichy 70.3 2016 – 27th August 2016

JamesB-Vichy-2016St James Batcheller Day

Today was race day for James and he was centre of attention or so I thought ….

Now I took it upon myself to get up at stupid o’clock and support him from start to finish

Well one of us had to do it … It wasn’t as if anything was happening tomorrow or anything ….

So there we were 0515 leaving for Vichy in pitch black from a hotel in the French wilderness… Nothing unusual or dodgy there then but totally acceptable on an Ironman weekend .

Traffic was a nightmare but meant James had no time to dilly or dally to the start .

Was it a wet suit swim .. Yes or no …..

I will take my wetsuit just in case the race directors change their mind …..

Being the professional he is James purposely stayed at the back so he could assess the form of his competitors or was it so he could have his own little window to swim in … I will let you decide 🙂

Swimmers going off course , struggling swimmers holding onto Marshals canoes , swimmers getting pulled from the water , children screaming with delight when their parent completed the swim , watching a team mate disappear into the distance ….

I can honestly say I did not expect spectating to be so emotional and sheer relief when JB walked out the water but sadly not a Halle Berry moment in a bikini

I forgot to mention that Pete was clearly missing his love boat lover as kept texting me or was it his cunning plan to see if it was a wet suit swim ….

Anyway , JB safely negotiated T1 and I managed to witness the bike mount and he was away….. And breathe 🙂

James had set a target of 4 hours for swim T1 and bike which gave me and the rest of the group an idea for time and meeting up etc etc….

Bike racking for IM was from 1600 but group arrived in time for the James arrival at T2 and to add support for the run

Pete provided tracker updates for his lover so we could plot where he was on course and could shout and scream as he ran past us on his 2 loops

In this online virtual world we live in you would have thought the info would have been ‘live ‘ so plenty of notice on his arrival into the finishing arena ….

Its fine he is only on 19k plenty of time Pete said only to shout next … There he is

The whole of Vichy crew leapt from their seats as if fired from a gun … Leaving all valuables behind inc phones and cameras so no photos taken cos the priority was banging the boards and making as much noise as possible as seen on ALL those IM branded finishes.

Now talking of sudden appearances ….2 in fact …

Lee ‘ the messiah ‘ Gladwell had appeared like a shining light of reassurance for those that needed it …

Emily (Mrs Pete) also appeared and elbowed JB out the relationship …

So now all the IM went and got their bikes for racking and if I’m honest with you the rest of us went … Thank f#*k for that and a sigh of relief … until Mark appeared panicking where do I take my bike ….

Don’t panic Mr Mannering and was safely directed the right way …. The day wouldn’t end in a Y without a Thomas flap

Final action of the day was the Iron Lady 5k supporters run . Amanda and Mandy totally ignore race regulation and wore ATC colours instead of race pink. Respectable times to … Well done ladies 🙂

Finally a big day for the racers tomorrow with everyone slipping off for their own food arrangements but agreeing to travel in convoy leaving 0445…. #cantwaitfortomorrowspost

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