Hawaii Ironman's clever guru

THE gruelling Hawaii Ironman Triathlon is one of the world's toughest events.

However, Grant Giles managed to be involved in the race, that was held last weekend, from the relative comfort of his Skennars Head home.

Giles coached a number of triathletes who contested the event ranging in ability from professionals to elder age group amateurs and many finished with some remarkable results from the 3.8km swim, 180km cycle and 42.2km run event.

“My whole coaching philosophy is based around seeing the development in my athletes and when they do that I'm happy,” Giles said yesterday.

Remarkably, Giles rarely sees his charges face-to-face as he coaches on-line through his company Aeromax Coaching, which is just as well considering many live outside NSW and indeed outside the country.

The best result was that of 50-54 age group athlete Kevin Fergusson, of South Australia, who finished first.

Norfolk Island's Tim Reed secured second in the 18-24 age group, while Sydney's Nicole Ward finished 34th in the women's professional race.

Other stand-out performances were from Darwin's Stuart Fitch who finished seventh in the 55-59 age group and Brian McGover, of Singapore, who finished 17th in the 50-54 age group.

Giles, originally from Wollongong, specialises in Ironman training, an event he knows intimately having finished in the top 10 at the Australian Ironman Championship at Foster nine times.

“I was a professional for 10 years before I started mucking around with coaching in 1998 and it just built from there,” the 45-year-old said.

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