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Byron Shire
June 18, 2024

Garry Simes racks up 25 finishes at Australia’s oldest ironman triathlon

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Garry enjoying his trophy for completing 25 Ironman Australia triathlons at Port Macquarie. Photo supplied

Ballina Triathlon Club member Garry Simes has achieved the milestone of finishing the Port Macquarie Ironman Australia race, one of Australia’s premier events, for the 25th time.

The Port Macquarie Ironman Australia event is the country’s oldest,  and also is a qualifying event for the Ironman World Championships.

‘It took me 27 years because of Covid and the floods,’ he said. ‘Overall I’ve competed in 43 events across the country’.

The race involves a 3.8km swim, 180km cycle and a 42km run.

Gary is 66.

‘I was too tired after the cycling, so I had to walk the run,’ he said. ‘But I finished it.’

All up he was on the track for over 16 hours, easily beating the 17 hours cut-off by 40 minutes or so.

Garry has been doing triathlons for 40 years and decided to have a go at Port Macquarie Ironman because ‘I hadn’t done it before’.

He has always been active and just tries to do some sort of training every day.

One of the hardest parts of doing an ironman is the lead up to the race when you start to think: ‘why am I doing this?’ he said.

‘It’s very daunting thinking about what you are going to do,’ he said. ‘When the race starts you just have to take it one kilometre at a time and try not to get too excited’.

Gary will attempt his 44th ironman next month.

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