Warwick High teachers Michelle and Peter Ferdinand and son Mark are ready for the Hell of the West Triathlon.
Warwick High teachers Michelle and Peter Ferdinand and son Mark are ready for the Hell of the West Triathlon. Gerard Walsh Warwick Daily New

True family tri

MICHELLE Ferdinand has never swum in a river and will debut with a 2km journey in the Macintyre River in the Hell of the West Triathlon at Goondiwindi on Sunday.

She will be joined in a team by her husband Peter and son Mark with daughter Rachel, a Brisbane netballer, on the riverside to watch.

Michelle was first selection for the swim after being a member of the Warwick Swimming Club 30 years ago.

"Peter and Mark can't swim well so I had to swim," Michelle said.

The trio decided to enter the event just before Christmas when Mark suggested it would be good training for him for the 2012 football season in the Youth State League.

Peter's longest rides last year were 4km or 5km twice a week to school before he decided to be a triathlete for a weekend.

"I ride between 30 and 80 kilometres five days a week and ride each Wednesday afternoon at Morgan Park," he said.

Michelle is a regular at WIRAC, swimming 1.5km to 2km a morning.

Her best time for 2km, the triathlon swim leg, is 50 minutes but she is worried about the lack of a little push off the blocks at the end of each lap.

The venue is Peter's hometown and the family had a quick look at the river on a trip west.

"I decided not to have a swim in the river and not think much about it," Michelle said.

"I will be happy just to jump in at the back of the field.

"We have set ourselves a goal and are going to achieve it."

Peter and Michelle teach at Warwick High and reckon they have a handicap in a private battle with fellow teachers Rebecca Hitzke, Nathan Rogers and Robert Stewart.

"We've got an age handicap," Peter said.

 

Target times

Michelle 2km swim - 1hr

Peter 80km cycle - 3 hrs

Mark 20km run - 2 hrs


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