County resident completes Ironman Triathlon

Published 7:38 pm Tuesday, November 22, 2016

Bryan Ainsley of Tyrrell County on Nov. 5 finished the grueling 140.6-mile Ironman Triathlon in Panama City Beach, Florida, in 15 hours, 5 minutes, 35 seconds.

His overall rank was 1,554 among the 2,006 finishers.

First place overall rank went to Jack Mcafee (U.S.), whose total time was 8 hours, 48 minutes, 15 seconds.

The last male finisher was Dan Blackburn (U.S.) at 16 hours, 56 minutes, 48 seconds.

The final female finisher was Olivia Zander (U.S.) at 16 hours, 59 minutes, 42 seconds.

The 2.4-mile swim took place in the Gulf of Mexico, where athletes had a short beach run in between laps. The two-loop swim course gave spectators a bird’s eye view of the entire course.

Ainsley finished the swim course in 2 hours, 9 minutes, 32 seconds. Mcafee’s time was 0:54:59, Blackburn’s was 1:47:10 seconds, and Zander’s was 1:42:47.

After exiting the water, the athletes were challenged by a fast, flat, one-loop bicycle course. The terrain pushes the body in a way most athletes are not accustomed to: the absence of rolling hills or steep inclines forces consistent pacing.

Ainsley posted 6 hours, 54 minutes, 30 seconds on the 112-mile bike course. Mcafee’s time was 4:48:51, Blackburn 7:21:53, and Zander 8:12:19.

Finally, the two-loop run course, while flat, has many turns throughout Panama City Beach neighborhoods. The 26.2-mile course also winds through St. Andrew’s State Park, a favorite among participants for its shaded areas and wildlife.

Ainsley’s run time was 5 hours, 38 minutes, 19 seconds, finishing at 9:39 p.m. Mcafee posted 2:59:02, Blackburn 7:24:31, and Zander 6:47:10.

Ainsley is a mechanic in the Tyrrell County Schools bus garage.

Two of Ainsley’s sisters, Bonnie Ainsley Hunt, and her husband Wayne from Boaz, Alabama, and Dana Elliott of Columbia, attended the event to support him and cheer him on.