Local athlete Olly Simon is gearing up for the Ironman World Championships in Kona on October 12.

He wil travel out a week before the event to acclimatise to the conditions.

The week before Ironman Wales came to Tenby, Simon was in Nice for the 70.3 World Championships in the hope of a good race in the build up to Kona, competing in the 40-44 age group with over 600 athletes from all over the world and another 2500 men in all age groups.

With such a high number of athletes all racing at the same time h said the atmosphere in Nice was amazing: "My goal was to get on the podium and I knew that would be a big ask, as the standard of athlete was the best I had seen in an amateur race.

"The 70.3 distance is half the full Ironman so you can push yourself a lot harder and with a non wetsuit swim, an ascent  and descent of a mountain on the bike and a flat hot run I knew this would be a great training day for the big one five weeks later."

Simon pushed hard in the swim to get near the front and then tried to stay there, and following the bike leg and solid half marathon effort he finished fourth in the 40-44 category. 

"The standard was very high in all age groups as it was a World Championships and as a veteran I was happy to put a good result in on a course that didn't really suit my strengths on the bike.

Recovery from that race has gone well, despite Simon picking up a niggle before the race in France.

"It's hard picking up little niggles that you can't push on through, but the older you get the more you understand when you have to listen to your body and give it a rest.

"I'm hoping to get a couple of runs in before I fly out and then I can get used to the heat on a couple of runs on the course.

"I'm looking forward to experiencing the atomosphere at the biggest race in triathlon and getting amongst it with the best in the world."

Anyone interested in following the action can follow the Pro race live on Facebook Ironman, and can track athletes on the Ironman app. 

Simon also thanked sponsors who have made his trips possible: Mike's Bike's, Big Brums, WB Griffiths and Sons, Drainforce Ltd, Aermech Ltd, Griffiths and Daughters Scaffolding, Eddie Rocks, and Leelavadee Thai Massage.