Interview: David McNamee – “The British guys have really stepped it up”

Ironman UK

David McNamee has rocketed onto long course scene, with a win at Ironman UK and a debut 11th at the big one in Kona, McNamee is part of a new generation of male long distance triathletes looking to make an impact on the global scene in the same way that the women have.

McNamee is in the running for our Triathlete of the Year competition and at the recent London Triathlon Show, was tipped by his Team Manager (Bob De Wolf) to podium at the Ironman World Championships 2016. It’s the perfect time for us to catch up then and find out what is in store for 2016!

Hi David, how are you and how has your ‘off-season’ been?

Hey Rich I am very well, the `off season` started with a good month break after Kona. After having raced 3 Ironman`s last year in my first year in non drafting I was very much in need of some time off both mentally and physically. By this point I have now got back into a consistent routine, firstly focusing on my weaknesses before I go into full preparation mode for Ironman Lanzarote on May 21st.

What are your reflections on the past Kona, the race itself and how you are now positioned to push on in 2016?

On reflection Kona is a mixture of emotions, to have finished so close to a top 10 having posted the fastest run split has made me leave my first trip to the big island hungry to go back with a more `complete package` to perform. However points wise it has left me in the position that I can make Kona the sole focus of 2016. The pro race itself in Kona is a special event, you have the best triathletes in the World assembled with the majority shooting for the podium. This leads to some extraordinary performances along with an equal or greater number of meltdowns.

You are racing Ironman Lanzarote, tell us what you are hoping for from that race and what has attracted your entry?

I remember as a kid watching the highlights of Ironman Lanzarote, it looked epic to me. Crazy but epic. It is a brutally honest race, the bike course is very demanding and the winds on the island can be cruel. To do well there you can`t afford to be weak over the 180k. It seems silly for someone whose bike is currently the weak link to target such a race but in my head it is the perfect opportunity to see how I have progressed in my weak spot.

Your most recent blog spoke of your battles with regulating your pacing on the bike and sometimes the run. What adjustments do you need to make?

I need to be more even paced, an adjustment that should through a mixture of some focused training and experience. I `burned too many matches` during the 2015 race season, too many silly spikes caused by a loss of focus or trying to close gaps as quick as possible. Ironman South Africa was the worst, I had somewhere in the region of 30 spikes above 400watts in the first 2hours on the bike, it led to me falling apart in the last 60k. This year I will also incorporate some key race pace turbo sessions in my training so I can control power better and learn to deliver at a constant output. For the marathon I just need to remember the mantra that the first 10k is the warm up for the remainder of the battle.

Where else might we see you racing in 2016?

I plan on racing in Aix en Provence in the lead up to Lanzarote. Then post Lanzarote I will look to do another two or three 70.3s in Europe before Kona.

You’ve been shortlisted for our Triathlete of the Year award – how does that feel?

Its a great feeling to be recognised for doing something you love. This year I feel the British guys have stepped it up a level which makes it even better that I have made the shortlist. Hopefully in the near future we can replicate the success of the British long course woman.

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