After completing the “swim of my life” Jen Annett was “comfortably” cycling with the pack when disaster struck.
The 33-year-old Penticton triathlete was about 18 miles in on the 112-mile bike course last Saturday at the 40th annual Ironman World Championship in Kailua-Kona, Hawaii when the problems started.
“My bike started shifting (gears) all over the place on its own I stopped once and reset it and it seemed to work…. for a very short time,” she wrote on her Facebook page. “I was pulled over for a few minutes thinking my day was done when tech showed up. They played around with it and determined that my blip box was shorting out from the storm we had last night.”
The tech managed to disconnect the battery-operated gear-changing mechanism but estimated it cost her an additional nine to 10 minutes.
She said after transitioning to the 26.22-mile run course things were going well: “until the energy lab, when I started getting sick. I pushed through the last 15km not being able to keep anything down.”
In the end it was a nine-hour, 27-minute, six second finish time and 25th in a field of 26 pro female competitors. Her times for the swim, bike and run events were: 0:58:47, 4:51:37 and 3:31:59.
First place went to Swiss triathlete Daniela Ryf, her fourth world championship in a row, in a time of 8:26:18.
Being her first pro race at the Ironman World Championship, Annett noted on her Facebook page: “learned lots (cover your bike up in transition if you know it’s gonna rain, and NEVER underestimate this course!) I’ll be back … smarter and stronger.”
She also credited the work of her Penticton coach Jonathan Caron for “getting me to the start line.”
Another local athlete competing in Hawaii was Susan Evans in the female 55 to 59 age division.
The 59-year-old was 39th in her division finishing with a overall time of 12:56:49.