'I got so many kicks in the face' - Bressie survives Dublin Ironman triathlon
THE inaugural Dublin Ironman 70.3 triathlon had an international feel as Frenchman Denis Chevrot romped home to take first place.
Some 2,500 athletes took part in the event which is just short of a full Ironman triathlon and was the first time such an event was staged in Dublin.
The athletes first took to the icy waters of Dun Laoghaire before 7am this morning for a 1.9km swim.
Once back on dry land, they took to bicycles for the 90km stretch which took them along thew coast through the heart of Dublin city along the quays and out of the city up to Dunboyne, Kilcock and Maynooth before circling back around.
They then finished up with a 20km run in the Phoenix Park, finishing on Chesterfield Avenue where a large crowd gathered to cheer the competitors home.
Some 1,500 Irish athletes took part in the event, with organisers adding that 500 women took part in the event.
The event was staged by Dublin City Council and Lord Mayor of Dublin Criona Ni Dalaigh said the event was a huge boost for the Irish tourism industry.
Chevrot came home in a time of four hours and one minute.
The first Irish man home was Kevin Thornton (30), originally from Co Galway, who came home in third place. He did it in a time of four hours eight minutes.
Thornton was left to rue an unfortunate tyre puncture during the cycle stage which cost him around three minutes.
The first female competitor home was Susie Cheetam, from the UK but whose mother is Irish. She completed in a time of fours hours and 27 minutes.
There were major disruptions to traffic this morning across the city though some roads have now reopened.
Musician Bressie came home in a time of five hours and seven minutes and said he was "delighted" with his effort despite struggling with the running section and getting a little too close to some other competitors during the swim.
"I really struggled with the run. My ankle just swelled up," he said.
"It was a weird swim. I got so many kicks in the face. I don't know if that's because they don't like me or that's just the way the swim works," he joked.
He also praised Dublin City Council and the organisers of the race.
"To organise an event like that takes serious work. It was definitely the best Ironman I've been involved in. The organisation, everything was incredible."