BLOWING out fields at Bathurst Wallabies Triathlon Club's local events isn't something new for accomplished triathlete Nick North, and although Sunday's opening round turned out the same way there was some added spice to the swim leg.
That's because he exited the pool with talented Bathurst Swim Club member Will Kelly right behind him, and thanks to the latter's quick transition North ended up riding down Hereford Street in second place.
North didn't take long to reel Kelly back in but the early push was what he needed to spur him on to a nice tempo - eventually completing the race in a time of 49 minutes and 58 seconds.
Tom Hanrahan, caught up in a great battle with Hollee Simons for second overall, was the second long course male across the line in 55:47.
Kelly lost ground on the bike but he put in a strong run leg to take third place in the men's race with a 1:00:24.
A bit of playful chat was all North needed for motivation as he came into the opening transition.
"We had a bit of banter before the race started, wondering who was going to sit on whose feet. He led for the first 300m and I managed to get the lead at the end but I thought that was a bit of a mistake because I was happy to sit on his feet," he said.
"We came into transition a little rusty and he started the bike in front of me, and started giving it to me so that got me fired up.
"This is always great fun though. I love racing locally and I'll do it as long as I can. It's so good seeing the community getting back together again."
North came out of the pool after completing his 500m in 6:27, with Kelly a mere for second behind him as they came up the ladder.
But the former's 23:19 bike leg secured the result.
North didn't take the foot off the pedal over the run, still breaking the 20 minute barrier over the 5km leg with a 19:07.
It was a pleasing result for North who was still recovering from last weekend's sixth place overall in the Maitland Triathlon long course, and first place finish in the 30-34 years category.
North finished the 2km swim, 49km ride and 15km run in three hours, six minutes and 19 seconds.
"It's different for me now where I'm just racing as a hobby and for a bit of fun. That took the pressure off," North said.
"To win my age and be sixth overall was unexpected. I was happy with it but I pulled up pretty sore. I don't know whether it's the age, the training or whether I haven't done one for a while but I'm glad I did today's race otherwise I reckon I'd still be carrying on."
This Sunday will be the first round of the Central West Inter Club Series at Mudgee.