Potts takes on new challenge

2007 Ironman 70.3 World Champion Andy Potts takes on a new distance tomorrow as he competes at the ITU Long Distance World Championships in Penticton.

| August 26, 2017 | NEWS

Andy Potts at the 2016 Ironman World Championship press conference.

Andy Potts at the 2016 Ironman World Championship press conference.

Photo >Silke Insel

Andy Potts has consistently been near the front of the field at the Ironman World Championship in Kailua-Kona, Hawaii with a couple of fourth-place finishes in 2014 and 2015 on his resume. This year he's taking on another world championship challenge in addition to his annual trip to Kona in October - he'll race at the ITU Long Distance World Championship in Penticton, Canada. We caught up with the American star via email while he was en route to Penticton.

Triathlonworld.com:Why have you chosen to race the ITU worlds champs this year – are you doing this race instead of Chattanooga?

Andy Potts: I've never done this distance before and it seemed like a good distance for me. Although, truth be told, I thought the swim was 4 km not 3 km - bummer, but it still works. Plus, I wanted to visit interior BC because I've heard so many good things about it from my wife (who is Canadian).

How has your preparation been for the championships?

I feel like I'm starting to put in some good work in my training. My coach and I planned to build through the year and I'm feeling stronger every session. I hope some of it gets to shine through on race day.

This is an interesting distance – kind of between a half and full. Do you see the pacing for an event like this closer to a half or full? Do you see this as a good distance for you?

I see this pacing a lot closer to the half.  We are off the bike before the 90 mile mark, which is always where things separate in the full distance. Combine that with the fact that we don't hit mile 20 on the run (another key moment) where the wheels really fall off. Ultimately, I'll find out when it is over.

What would it mean for you to win another world championship title in Penticton this weekend?

Oh boy, that would be a real thrill. My family is traveling with me and anytime I can race great in front of them it is always memorable. Bottom line, though, is that if I race my best then I'll be happy and that is what I'm chasing after all these years.

Looking at your calendar it looks like you have three long-distance races lined up for the last part of the year – why the heavy load at the end of the year?

Well, I wanted to race Lake Placid because it is an awesome race and there is always Kona in October. I threw this in to add a little variety. The big key is recovery after this race to set up the next challenge. I like to say that the best preparation can't guarantee a great race but it can guarantee a quick recovery.