Fife hotelier tackles Ironman Austria endurance event

Nicholas Russell, Scotland’s first Ironman hotelier has proved his mettle once again, as he successfully completed the challenge for a second time.

Monday, 27th September 2021, 2:51 pm

The managing director of Balbirnie House Hotel in Markinch, took part in Ironman Austria – the most challenging race in Europe.

The 54-year old endured a 2.4 mile swim in open water, followed by a 112 mile cycle, finishing with a 26.2 mile marathon, with all sections timed on the Ironman clock.

With an overall time-limit of 17 hours, competitors are up against the clock to complete the challenge, and Russell was more than up for the test, finishing in 14 hours 25 minutes 20 seconds.

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Nicholas Russell

Over 25% of participants failed to finish, and the achievement betters his previous finishing time in 2019 of 15:03:23.

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Despite being unable to take part in 2020’s race due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Nicholas continued to train locally, and his achievement set a new age group record for Glenrothes Triathlon Club.

He said; “On the day itself, and despite all my previous experience and the very best preparations I could conceive, I encountered an extremely difficult and character-building day, and due to unforeseen circumstances, I needed to make up a strategic and nutritional plan as I progressed through each stage.

“It was like trying to fly a plane whilst building it at the same time.

“I certainly needed to dig deeper than I have ever done before to make it through to the end.

“I am absolutely delighted to have been able to have set a new age group record for our local club.”

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