OVERCOMING HER DEMONS: Katey Gibb, winner of the 2017 Ironman 70.3 Sunshine Coast.
OVERCOMING HER DEMONS: Katey Gibb, winner of the 2017 Ironman 70.3 Sunshine Coast. Iain Curry

Why Ironman 70.3 winner hates riding with traffic

IRONMAN 70.3 Sunshine Coast winner Katey Gibb doesn't like cycling near traffic and there's a good reason why.

The 30-year-old lost her partner in 2014, when he was struck by a drunk driver while riding home from work in Perth.

Brynt McSwain's death re-ignited debate about road safety for cyclists, particularly in Western Australia, and Ms Gibb battles demons every time she gets on her bike for a training ride.

"I have (thought about giving it up) and I still get very nervous riding on the roads so I only ride once a week on the road and the rest I do on an indoor bike," she said.

"I never ride by myself, I'm always riding with someone else just because I'm not confident. Riding on a race day is different because the roads are closed, (but) it's always in the back of my mind."

Ms Gibb relocated to Buderim in December, with fiance Barry Oelofsen.

"I didn't want to be in Perth any more ... moving here was to restart my life a little bit," she said.

She said the Sunshine Coast provides a safer environment for her.

"I'm not overly confident riding in traffic because of my past history with cyclists and cars so moving here (enables me) to be able to train where there's not much traffic and it's laid-back, which is pretty good," she said.

"Queensland's got that 1m rule which they don't have in WA and it makes a difference. You get cases where people cut it a bit close but compared to WA, because there is a law in place, it makes it a little bit better."

In April, the State Government enforced a law requiring at least 1m between vehicles and cyclists.



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