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Hendersons ‘never say never’

Monday 13 March 2023 | Written by Supplied | Published in Sports, Triathlon

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Hendersons ‘never say never’
Father and son and seasoned triathletes Kevin and Thomas Henderson with their medals from the recent Ironman Taupo. SUPPLIED/23030908

For seasoned triathletes Kevin and Thomas Henderson the recent Ironman Taupo saw the pair finally both complete the famous race.

Kevin, completed his 18th Ironman while son Thomas made his debut in the long distance race said it was a proud moment. 

“It was awesome to finally have him there. Gave me something to look out for and kind of hoped I could catch up to him which could have been possible. But also to be able to make sure he did get to the finish line.”

It was a few years in the making as Thomas, currently living in Greymouth as a secondary teacher, was due to debut in 2020 but the Covid-19 pandemic saw that delayed until this year. 

“It was always something we wanted to do, cross off an Ironman together,” Thomas said. 

“Realising though just how much training is needed for an event like Ironman was a big eye opener. It meant a lot of planning for me to squeeze in the sessions around work and spending time with my partner and two young kids.”

During the 7.5km swim then 180km bike ride Thomas said he was feeling good but as expected the 42km run was the real battle of the day. 

“I definitely had a couple of moments towards the end where the mental battle was happening. Having mum and my brother and his family out supporting us was a huge boost. 

“The whole Taupo community create such a fun atmosphere and the cheering and support on the final laps of the run got me over the line.”

With the 40th edition of the race next year, both men haven’t ruled out standing next to each other on the start line again. 

“Being the 40th next year is a carrot, but I think I will need to go back to more intense training like I use to. I have lost that killer instinct from not doing local races but maybe if Tom wanted to I would join him.” Kevin said. 

“Never say never.”

  • Jaimie Keay