Giant-sponsored triathlete Tim Van Berkel battled through tough conditions in Cairns, Australia, to finish on the podium at the Ironman Asia-Pacific Championships. The Australian landed the second spot behind Braden Currie of New Zealand to secure his starting position for the Ironman World Championships in Hawaii this October.
“Yeah, the conditions were very tough today, with a choppy swim and a block head wind on the bike leg made it hard going,” Van Berkel said. “But I’m glad my legs started to come good and I was able to put together a solid marathon.”
Van Berkel, riding his Trinity Advanced Pro bike, built up with a pre-production carbon aero WheelSystem branded #overachieve, came through the second transition following the 180km bike ride about eight minutes behind the race leader Currie.
“It was a rough start to my day with a bad swim, and things didn’t get better on the bike leg,” Van Berkel said. “I started the run in fourth place and got into a good rhythm early and started to feel a lot better. I moved through the field and was able to run into second place and punch my ticket to Hawaii.”
It has been a strong season so far for the Aussie, with consistent podium performances at all his key events.
“That’s three second places in a row now,” Van Berkel said. “I’m happy to be consistent and I’m especially proud of my second places at both 70.3 and Ironman Asia Pacific Championship races, but I’m still very hungry to win a race this year.”
Looking forward, Van Berkel plans to take a short break and then ramp up again for the rest of the season. “Ironman World Championships is the big goal and it’s a massive relief to have my qualifications done,” he said. “I’m going to have a break now for a few weeks to rest the mind and body, then it’s back to business. I have two more 70.3 to race in Philippines and Australia before the World Championships in October.”