Gerard Donnelly for a few will bring back Memories of the 1988 Australian Ironman at Forster.
He won it and continued to race successfully around the country for the next few years competing in over 100 Triathlons.
He retired in the early 1990’s and did nothing much until 2004 when he decided to take up bike racing. The major race on his calender was the Baw Baw Classic, a 100 km race, described as one of the most gruelling road races in Australia with average speeds less than 30km for the elite. To finish the race they have a 6km climb at 12%. The Sun Tour raced there once and never came back.
Gerard raced this for 3 years on really bad nutrition, with a phone call coming to me in late 2006 to discuss nutrition. In 2007 & 8 Gerard totally changed his nutrition with great success finishing 2nd and 3rd in the Masters Category.
He described his changes;
” I decided to re enter the 2007 Baw Baw classic, but this time I was armed with what I thought was the missing link, my nutrition! The result was AMAZING. Although I only finished second, the contrast in the way I felt and performed was truly miraculous. My overall ride time was over 40 min quicker and the time for the climb alone was 28 min quicker than in 2004.I carried no food in my pockets, only 2 hammer gels.I used 2 biddons of Heed and Perpetuem for the entire 4 hour race. Since that day I have been training and racing with all the hammer products, including Recoverite as post race recovery drink and endurolyte tablets which have fixed my cramping issue. I took our training group to listen to Steve Born when he came to Melbourne and it was the best 2 hours of information that any one of them had ever heard regarding nutrition and sport.
Many of my training partners are all now using the hammer products and on some of our longer training rides we often comment, when we see riders reaching into their pockets( for who knows what), that within the next half hour they will be hitting the wall and we are generally right.”
It’s great to see Gerard back racing after years off, and just goes to show how important nutrition can be !