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Nesbitt conquers Western Australian Ironman

Echuca's Peter Nesbitt tackles Western Australian Ironman.

LUKE MCMANUS December 19, 2013 4:04am

Peter Nesbitt crosses the finish line. Photo submitted


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For Echuca’s Peter Nesbitt, conquering the Western Australian Ironman was merely a side show to the thrill of competing side-by-side with family.

As Peter stood on the beach of Busselton’s Geographe Bay, 220km south of Perth, nothing was going to stop the 51-year-old from finishing the December 8 race.

Not even the arduous 3.8km swim, 180km cycle, and marathon 42km run which lay ahead.

The encouraging thought of enduring the elements alongside brothers Mick and Troy, and 22-year-old nephew Luke, was all the motivation Peter needed.

‘‘It was absolutely terrific, not just the race itself but our preparation was really enjoyable,’’ he said.

‘‘Because they are all based in Perth, it was good way of keeping in contact. We would let each other know how our training schedule was going and what shape we were in.

‘‘We all focused on and shared the same goal, which was pretty special.’’

Busselton wasn’t the first time ‘Team Nesbitt’ had tackled an ironman together.

Peter joined father-son duo Mick and Luke in the 2011 Ironman WA, capping off a lifelong dream for the local practitioner, on top of sparking an inner desire to challenge himself further.

‘‘Mick called me about 12 months earlier wanting me to have a go,’’ Peter said.

‘‘It gave me that extra motivation to get fit. The race was difficult, no doubt about that, but I got through it okay and I ended up really enjoying it.

‘‘I never thought I’d be capable of doing anything like that, especially from such a small fitness base. It just goes to show with a bit of hard work you can achieve anything.’’

In the space of three years, Peter has completed three ironmans and three marathons and shows no signs of slowing down.

He said working in the health sector and possessing a sense of responsibility to ‘‘set an example for my family and my patients to follow’’ has helped him along the way.

He described the support from his family and his friends at Echuca-Moama Tri Club as ‘‘sensational’’ and something which motivates him to set his sights on another ironman.

‘‘Health is important to me, especially preventative health, and if I’m going to talk to my children and patients about it I need to lead the way.

‘‘They’re all starting to discover an interest in their own sports and health so its important to keep on top of things in that respect.

‘‘When Troy, who had never entered a triathlon in his life and who hadn’t been doing any exercise, said he wanted to do this year’s race it was terrific because it gave us a great excuse to do it all again, but this time as one big family.

‘‘I said after the first time that I wouldn’t do it unless my family came across and shared in the experience. My daughter Katherine made shirts and seeing the whole crew lining the road was amazing and really lifted my spirits.

‘‘They even ran with me for 100m or so each time I passed them.’’

On a sunny and calm Sunday afternoon, Peter crossed the finish line after more than 12 and a half hours on the course.

Luke, Mick and Troy had already finished, which didn’t faze Peter too much, even with the coveted ‘‘Nezzy Trophy’’ on the line.

‘‘There’s always going to be competition,’’ Peter said.

‘‘We’ll knock each other around and bag each other out from time to time, but it’s all light hearted and in good fun.

‘‘It’s more camaraderie and we’re extremely supportive of each other.

‘‘Because Mick and Luke finished first, together, they’ll share the trophy this time.

‘‘We mainly do it for the younger ones, to have something for them to aspire towards. It’s another element to our close-knit family and simply binds us closer together.’’

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