Pumping Up: Ironman New Zealand Powering Into Full Gear, New Fast Jacket to Take Center Stage
Mirinda Carfrae is the reining Ironman Women’s World Champion. And she’s going for blood.
The audacious Aussie is powering into the coming Ironman New Zealand contest this coming Friday (March 4, U.S.) with two shining beacons on hand: the World Champion Medal from Kona…and brand spankin’ new Oakley Fast Jackets – the much-anticipated set of performance shades that made their debut in Kona this past October. Read: Watch out, because she’s set to make some noise. (Live Event Streaming Video and Coverage at Ironman.Com)
Oakley’s star triathlete, who is the first reigning Ironman world champion to compete in New Zealand, comes in as a double world champion, winning the Ironman 70.3 World Championship in 2007 before finishing second in her first attempt at Hawaii in 2009, setting a new run course record in the process. Her 2010 campaign was even more brilliant – with a resounding victory in Hawaii where she lowered her own run record to a 2:53.32.
“From the first year to second year was a huge learning curve and I had massive improvement this time,” Mirinda said. “I think you learn each time you race an Ironman. The first year I was very tentative. I felt a little more confident to push a bit harder this time. It’s given me more confidence to race the Ironman distance and hopefully I can achieve that again in Taupo.”
One thing is certain. She’s not resting on her laurels.
“Winning Kona was a huge goal for me. To tick that off in just my second time in Hawaii was great. It has set me apart from many others – in that I have that world title. But I don’t really see myself any differently. I love the sport and I love racing – and want to keep improving.”
The Champ will be joined by some of her fellow O team athletes in vying for glory in the land of Kiwis. Terenzo Bozzone, a favorite coming into Kona in 2010, will be mashing into NZ with his own pair of Fast Jackets.
They’ll both be joined by Cameron Brown, who’s no stranger to triumphs in the race. With nine wins and three second place finishes, he’s charging in to the event with his own ferocity.
And if he wins it, he’ll become the first athlete in the history of Ironman to win the same event 10 times.
“I enjoyed winning one, so winning nine titles was pretty cool, but if I can do 10 it will be absolutely awesome.”
And despite the shared O family connection, Bozzone and Brown will be gunning at each other.
“He’ll (Terenzo) be definitely trying to take it to me again at some point,” Cameron said. “I’ll be trying to limit any losses I can if he gets a lead and then, hopefully, I’ll be able to make up the lost ground over the run leg like I normally do.”
With that slew of Oakley stars going at it – along with Jo Lawn – New Zealand is sure to be one intense test of will.