The women's triathlon threw up one of the most amazing moments of London 2012 over the weekend, with Nicola Spirig of Switzerland and Lisa Norden crossing the line together in exactly the same time of 1hr 59m 48s. After two hours of swimming, running and riding, it took a super slow motion camera to separate them and decide that Spirig had taken gold. Norden won silver but for the width of her vest, and took the decision with such grace that it is sure to have won her many more admirers.
We had a keen eye on the women's triathlon that took place on Saturday, having had the pleasure of speaking to it's Bermudan entrant Flora Duffy before the competition. Duffy certainly had an eventful race, coming off her bike on what proved to be a dangerous corner for a number of entrants. She also suffered a mechanical fault which bumped her down the field, but still managed to finish in 45th position in a time of 2h 08m 54s.
Here's what Flora had to say pre-race, about her time in Colorado, completing a triathlon at age 8, and her search for her very own Christian Grey...
How did you get started in Triathlon? Are there any of the disciplines that you prefer over others?
I did my first triathlon when I was 8 years old in Bermuda. I swam with a local swim club, I was in a school running club and had a bike so thought I would do a triathlon. I won my age group, fell in love with the sport, joined a local triathlon club and the rest is history. Growing up running was my favorite, and I actually didn't start to take triathlon seriously until I was 17years old. Swimming has always been my least favorite.
What makes you get out of bed in the morning to train?
I guess, the love for the sport makes me get out of bed in the morning. I really enjoy it and to be honest when I am not training I don't feel like myself. It is such a part of my life that waking up early to train is not difficult.
How has your preparation gone compared to Beijing '08? Do you feel confident coming in to the games?
My preparation this time around is going much better! Leading into Beijing I was sick and injured. It was a very difficult time and in hind sight I probably shouldn't have gone because physically and mentally I was drained, but at 20 years old it is hard to turn down the Olympics. So needless to say the race did not go well and I ended up taking 2 years off. This time I am in a totally different mind set. Training has been going really well and I have also been racing well.
What does it mean to you to represent your country at the Olympics? How do your family and friends feel?
It is awesome to represent Bermuda to the Olympics. I think they are excited and proud of me.
So many of your Bermudan sporting compatriots leave the islands to study and train abroads. What's your situation and how are you finding it?
I live and training in Boulder, Colorado. I am also a student at the University of Colorado (CU). I love it out here!
What is the sporting infrastructure like in Bermuda? Are there good opportunities for athletes like yourself?
Considering Bermuda is so small the sporting infrastructure is quite good. There are a lot of local sports clubs for a wide range of sports and many opportunities to race/compete internationally. However, at a certain age you have to leave the island if you really want to achieve sporting success.
What advice would you give to aspiring athletes that come from smaller countries less renowned for sporting success?
I think the key is to not be afraid of following your dreams. Even if that means relocating abroad to reach your athletic potential.
We saw your tweet about post London wanting to find your Christian Grey, which made us smile. Do you have any other plans for after London 2012, both in the short term and long term?
Well besides finding Christian Grey, I will go back to school. I have a year left at CU and want to get that finished so I can focus on triathlon for a few years. I will do some xterra triathlon after the Olympics and a few non drafting races in the US.
Is this your first time in London? Are there any things you're particularly looking forward to about being in the UK?
This will not be my first time in London. I hold dual nationality ( British and Bermudian) so I have a spent a lot of time in the UK. My parents were born and raised there so every summer we would take a family trip over to England. I also went to school in England for four years, so England is sort of a second home to me. During the four years of school I took many trips to London so know the city fairly well. It is an amazing city. I'm looking forward to being back in England as I miss it.
And finally, if you could meet any Olympian, past or present, who would it be and why?
That's a hard question so I will limit it to 2012 Olympians and I'll go with Ryan Lochte.
We want to say a big thanks to Flora Duffy for chatting to us and congratulations on your second Olympics. Here's to Rio in 2016!