G’day, it’s Gracie here, writing for Rural Organics.
It has always been a dream of Mum’s (founder Janie McClure) to visit China and explore opportunities to export our amazing and delicious Rural Organics Meat. So luckily for me, when I mentioned to Mum that I wanted to go to China to compete it the very first Ironman 70.3. She jumped straight onboard!
Mum wasn’t the only one who was up for the challenge. Coach and good friend Annie Martin was also on board to race and a wonderful friend Justine Reanney, who lives and works in Shanghai was delighted at the thought of coming to the triathlon, supporting – and hosting us magnificently in Shanghai afterwards. Thankfully, Johnny was happy to hold the forte at home on the family front and give his support! It was awesome – our future adventure was coming to life.
Mum organised work meetings for after the race in Shanghai and our name: ‘Team Hefei’ emerged…. our adventure began.
As a bit of background, earlier this year, ‘Ironman,’ the global organiser of Ironman Triathlon races, was bought out by a huge Chinese Company called ‘Dalian Wanda Group,’ China’s biggest commercial real estate developer – (for a lazy 650 million). As such, a big part of the direction of Ironman’s growth looks to be heading toward Chinese shores in the future.
Race day came and went – Annie came 2nd in her age-group and qualified for the Hawaiian Ironman World Championship which is fantastic. I finished 4th in my age-group and was glad to see some improvements in my racing. Justine and Mum were awesome supporters!
We finished our trip with a few days in Shanghai where we relaxed, took in the city and were delighted to meet Tony Mesiano from Tenderplus and find out more about export opportunities.
The Chinese people were wonderful to us. It was a beautiful adventure and shared experience for all.