ECHUCA’S David Oman has completed an astonishing 20th consecutive Ironman 70.3 Port Macquarie triathlon after racing its most recent event on May 6.
The 51-year-old has raced all but two of the triathlons, with the event established in 1985.
The triathlon started in Forster-Tuncurry where Oman raced on nine occasions before it relocated to Port Macquarie in 2006.
This year it was rebranded to become the Oceania TriClub Championship, formerly under the Australian TriClub Championship format, taking place concurrently with Iron Man Australia.
Oman ranked 121st in his division finishing the 3.9km swim, 180.2km bike and 42.2km run in an overall time of 16:35.50, but his longevity in the event far outweighs his individual results.
‘‘It was always a goal to finish my 20th Ironman,’’ he said.
‘‘The previous two years were quite stressful with bike issues and this year I had the same trouble with the electronics on my gears failing.
‘‘I ended up running up some of the hills, and it was a push in the last 10km to get to the end in time.’’
At his peak training and fitness Oman was finishing in under 12 hours, his best time 11 hours and 44 minutes, but bike mechanical issues had hurt his most recent times.
‘‘My first Ironman was just to see if I could finish it,’’ he said.
‘‘But it’s become a bit of an addition.
‘‘I’d seen them on TV and thought about giving it a go, but it wasn’t until I started doing triathlons with Echuca-Moama Triathlon Club in 1992 that I really found my way into it.’’
Oman enjoyed keeping fit and exercising, which was the main reason for his entry in the Australian Ironman, and Port Macquarie was the closest to Echuca with others held in Cairns and Western Australia.
‘‘It’s probably a little overboard,’’ he laughed.
‘‘I’ll be going back next year and hopefully finishing in a better bike time without any mechanical or electrical problems.
‘‘I’ll keep racing as long as I can — or at least until the 70-year-olds start catching up with me.’’