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Harpham hard task master



Scott Harpham heads out on the run leg of the Taupo 70.3 Ironman. PHOTO/SUPPLIED 




Carterton triathlete Scott Harpham was “happy enough” with his eighth-place finish but was “lukewarm” about his personal performance in his professional debut in the Taupo 70.3 Ironman on Saturday.

Harpham completed the half-distance ironman, which was held in persistent rain, in four hours, nine minutes and 24 seconds and was the sixth professional across the finish line, about 20 minutes behind winner Jack Moody.

“I normally have an acceptable range, and you’re never going to have a perfect day, and you’re never going to be at your absolute best, so it wasn’t a high, and it wasn’t a low, but it was sort of below average,” said Harpham, who was particularly disappointed with his time of 28min 21sec for the 1.9km swim in a cold Lake Taupo. 

“My swim is my weakest point, so I was never going to swim with them, but I thought I would be about two minutes closer around the 26-minute mark, and then the bike was probably the same; I did okay and made up some places, but the bike power numbers I pushed weren’t anything special, and I’ve done a lot better in training.

“Then the run, I just didn’t have the snap in the legs I normally do, but looking at what everyone else was doing, it was probably about the same, and no one was running super fast that day.”

Harpham plans to make adjustments to his training so he can turn on a top performance in his next professional outing, the Tauranga half-ironman, on January 21.  

Other Wairarapa triathletes also turned in notable performances at Taupo on Saturday. 

Catherine Rossiter-Stead was third in the women’s 55-59 age group in 5:57:49, Paddy Rimene was eighth in the men’s 45-49 age group in 4:59:45, Gavin Champion was eighth in the 50-54 age group in 5:09:53, and Greg Lang was eighth in the 55-59 age group in 5:36:09.    

Destry Gourlay completed the full ironman in 11:18:35, finishing fifth in the 55-59 age group. 

Chris Cogdale
Chris Cogdale
Chris “Coggie” Cogdale has extensive knowledge of sport in Wairarapa having covered it for more than 30 years, including radio for 28 years. He has been the sports guru at the Wairarapa Times-Age since 2019.

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