Ironman Triathlete Pro Guy Crawford interview

Pro triathlete Guy Crawford had one of his best results of the season in the recent Ironman 70.3 Hawaii and had a first hand look at Lance Armstrong in action.

Guy has generously agreed to an interview with IronStruck.com and we are pleased to share it with you.

GUY CRAWFORD INTERVIEW:

–It seems that in all your races you can hold your own in the swim with the best in the world. Would you say that this is by far your strongest discipline?

Ironstruck interview of Guy Crawford
Yes I’d say it is my strongest discipline. I am hoping that my riding and running are closing that gap now !!!!

–Is it fair to say that your best Ironman results are still to come as many endurance athletes are still reaching their peak of performance into their mid to late 30’s?

Definitely, I haven’t really trained for an IM before. but I’ve put in my first real training block, specific for an IM… It made me want to go back to half’s ha!….. But I feel there is a lot to come with my Ironman racing. I’m excited to see how I improve over the next few years.

–Your performance in the recent Ironman 70.3 must rank right up there with one of your best ever considering the conditions and the competition. Just one more minute and you would have jumped past Maik Twelsiek and into a battle for third place with Chris Lieto.

Yeah it was a great race for me. I was happiest with the way I ran off the bike, I felt strong and was mentally in a great place.

You always have your ” if only’s” after the race and mine was ” if only I rode a bit quicker ” I probably didn’t go as hard as I could have. However it’s a gamble every time and I’m happy with the outcome.

–You came out of the water right behind Lance Armstrong in the race. Were you actually keying on him and in his draft through-out the swim?

I wasn’t keying off Lance in particular, However his Yellow cap was the easiest to spot. I swam most of the swim next to or on his feet.

My goal however was to keep myself in the top 5 so I didn’t lose any time… It was much easier than trying to lead the swim out. I knew the pace was going to be on as soon as we hit the shore, so I was trying to conserve energy.

–When you were on your way to the turn at Hawi in Ironman 70.3 Hawaii, what were your thoughts when you saw Lance charging back toward you on the way to building a lead on the bike of over six minutes?

My thoughts were ” OH CRAP ” I felt like I was riding well. I tried to take Lance and Chris out of the equation and focus on Greg and Maik ( A.K.A the GCM ) as those two are also great cyclists and would be the strongest in most other professional fields..I was actually quite calm though-out the bike. I could only control what I was doing and how I was feeling… Then once descending Hawi my thoughts were all about staying upright on the bike..

Obviously it is great that you and your partner Kate Bevilaqua can travel together and enter the same races. However do you both find that there is much training that you just have to do on your own as it’s just more practical as you may often be at different points in your training programs?

Actually Kate and I train together quite a lot. Our programs are generally quite similar as we are peaking for the same races. We swim together and do our longer rides together. Sometimes if I have specific session we start together and meet up at the end.

All in all we make the training work so we both get what best for us out of it. Sometimes that means we can’t train together. ( but for the most part we leave the house at the same time and return at very similar times. )

Interview of Guy Crawford pro triathlete

Guy on the run in Busselton

–There are many schools of thought about endurance training and the Ironman in particular. When Dave Scott released his training book in Kona 1986 the day after winning Ironman Hawaii yet again it was a big hit. However it is almost based solely on high-intensity intervals in all three disciplines as opposed the Long Slow Distance approach. In the book “Iron War” he talked about how he would train until it hurt and then push himself some more and virtually teach himself to race through the pain and that was the key to his success. What are your thoughts on high-intensity interval training as opposed to long distance? Do you tend to do mostly longer endurance work with injections of high-intensity at strategic times in your program as many Ironman athletes tend to do?

I have tried both.

Each person is different, but everyone needs a base to build from. So my plan has been to build the base(primarily)with endurance work and then introduce intervals and intensity as we get closer to race day. However I tend to have a Hard TT built in very early on. Mostly I leave my trust in Peter McKenzie my coach. We’ve been working together for two plus years and he’s taken me from not making the top 10 in my age group in 2009 to where I am now.

–What is your take on the whole Lance thing and the Tour drug charges he once again faces. Many people think the tour is the tour and is old news. Lance had to find his way in some of the earlier races as a pro triathlete this year as he imploded in Ironman 70.3 Texas and finished 7th. He also struggled in St. Croix before figuring things out in Florida and Hawaii 70.3’s.

It seems pretty obvious that he is simply an exceptional endurance athlete finding his way in a new sport. The WTC regulations stipulate that any pro under investigation for drug use is banned from racing in their events. You would think this was in reference to drug charges stemming from racing in triathlon events and not years ago in an unrelated sport. Like him or love him, Lance Armstrong has taken our sport to new heights. Do you think he should be allowed to race in Ironman France and don’t you think it would be very special to see him compete in Kona in 2012 against the very best?

Lance!!! , Well this is a serious topic with much debate. My view point is quite simple really. Let him race. His cycling days are behind him. He’s been hammered on this drug debate for years. However it doesn’t look like he’ll be able to race IM France. So time will tell.

–Of all the WTC events you have entered during your career do you have a favorite that you try and return to every season? It seems that Ironman New Zealand would rank near the top.

haha Yes my home race is IM New-Zealand and I do rank that as a favorite for myself, but I will also race IM Western Australia each year as that’s my second home. both races are special to me.

–Finally, where can we expect to see you racing in the coming months? Getting to be more and more choices every year and it must take some careful planning for you and Kate to work out a race schedule.


With so many races round the world it makes for tough decisions. Each race has something special to offer and this year both Kate and I are trying a few new ones to experience new places and courses. Exciting year ahead… We plan our races well in advance, I think at this stage we are up to March 2013. With a few ?? on some parts of the schedule…The points system makes the schedule a little more changeable.

IM CDA
IM Mont Tremblant
70.3 Worlds or another 70.3
IM Kona or another race in October ( depending on points and ranking )

Thanks Guy and best of luck with your Ironman career!

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