Miller struggles in pro debut

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Sunday, April 27, 2014


CEBU-BASED Joseph Miller made history as the first and only Filipino off-road triathlete to join the pro ranks in Xterra.

Miller joined the international elite triathletes in his inaugural pro event in the Xterra Asia-Pacific Champioship last Saturday at the Callala Beach in Jersey Bay, New South Wales, Australia.

Miller had a solid start and was among the top four triathletes with teammate Ben Allen, and Xterra warrior Conrad Stoltz. But Australia’s icy waters proved too much for Miller’s body.

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“I was in front with Ben Allen but when we were about to do the 300-meter dolphin dive, I felt my body go numb. My biceps and legs could barely move and I could hardly kick. My jaw was locked. I realized it was hypothermia. In the second loop, di na mapilo ako paa. I wanted to quit but my fighting spirit helped me to keep going on,” Miller said in a message to Sun.Star Cebu.

Miller said other competitors had no problem with the cold, but for him, but for him
it was like swimming in “ice-water.”

“In the bike, I was not able to get my time because it was almost a single track route and I was behind from the swim. I did recover and had a good run, even if I was almost freezing,” Miller said.

Despite suffering from hypothermia, Miller managed to clock 3 hours and 31 seconds for 61st out of 175 finishers.

The event covered a 1.5-kilometer swim, 32K bike, and a 12K run.

“It was a blast. I’m so happy taking it as my pro inaugural, I’m thankful to God, even though I struggled in the swim course, He did not leave me and gave me the will to survive to cross the finish line as a proud Filipino. Thanks to Allen and Jacqui Slack” Miller posted on his Facebook account.

Next race

Miller has been supported by Allen, the two-time Xterra Philippine champion and was
convinced to turn pro. Allen was impressed by Miller’s strong performance in the 2014 Vaseline Men Xterra Philippines in Liloan and invited him to train in Australia.

Dan Hugo clocked in 2:19:01 and won the Xterra Asia-Pacific. He was followed by Courtney Atkinson (2:22:49), Braden Currie (2:23:46) and Bradley Weiss (2:24:09).

Miller and Team Ben Allen will compete in Xterra Malaysia on May 4. Miller said he will bounce back and race strong since Malaysia’s climate is similar to that if the Philippines. (RSC)

Published in the Sun.Star Cebu newspaper on April 28, 2014.

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