Colin Delaney joins dad Brian in hometown Ironman

Colin Delaney, left, and his father Brian enjoy an afternoon stroll through the Ironman village Thursday afternoon. Colin will be competing in Sunday’s race for the first time, while Brian looks to reach the finish line for the 19th time in Lake Placid. (Enteprise photo — Lou Reuter)

LAKE PLACID — Lake Placid’s Brian Delaney isn’t ready to pass on his Ironman torch yet, but if that happens in the future, he may be handing it over to the youngest son Colin.

On Saturday, Delaney, the owner of High Peaks Cyclery, will keep his streak of competing in every Ironman Lake Placid alive when he participates in race for the 19th straight summer. And at the same time, 26-year-old Colin Delaney will finally get the opportunity he’s been chomping at the bit to do for years when he takes on the 140.6-mile triathlon in his hometown for the first time.

Colin, who is 26, has finally found the time to try the race that he’s watched since he was young. When it comes to endurance sports, he’s done about everything but the Ironman distance race. He’s been one of the top finishers just about every Monday during recent summers in Lake Placid in the High Peaks Cyclery mini-triathlons, and up until a winter ago, he traveled across the world as a nordic combined ski racer

“I decided to race this year because it’s my first full year off from trying to compete in nordic combined skiing,” Colin Delaney said. “I’ve always planned on doing Ironman as soon as I could.”

He is hoping to reach the finish line in about 10 and a half hours.

“I have an idea of how fast I can bike and how fast I can run,” he said. “The swim I’m not so certain on. Rounding out basically, I think I can average around 20 miles an hour on the bike, run eight-minute miles, then yeah, it could be a good day.

“But being my first one, I’m just looking to take in the experience,” he continued. “I’m not going to be upset if things don’t go well time-wise. I’m just going for it. I’ve been out of town for one, but I’ve been here for 17 out of 18.”

“I’ll keep going for a while, but eventually, I’ll pass the torch on to Colin or Matt,” Brian Delaney said while also mentioning his oldest son Matt. “At least a Delaney family member in every Ironman.”

Colin said he hasn’t been training in the water much this season, but knows he’s experienced and fit enough that the swim shouldn’t be an issue, and hopes the rest should fall into place.

“Baring any catastrophe, I’m just looking forward to experiencing the day,” Colin Delaney said. “If I completely bonk, it will be a little less fun, but I’ll still struggle through it. I’m shooting to be steady the whole day. I will definitely have to contain myself because the training for nordic combined skiing is a half-hour race at a time going all out the whole way. I just have to make sure I don’t get too excited on the bike and just gun it.”

In addition to racing in all 18 Ironman Lake Placid triathlons, and loads of other events across the country, including the world championships in Kona, Brian Delaney certainly has a wealth of experience piled up in the sport. And he offered plenty of that advice to his son, while still keeping it simple.

“Think of it as three races. Finish you swim, get on the bike — you know you can ride 100-plus miles at a good pace. Go out a little easier on the first lap, and if you feel good, then spin it home and get the legs feeling a little free for the run. On the run, if you want to do well, you have to run through the aid stations. Grab it and go.”

“I’m just looking to not completely suffer and maintain the pace I think I can,” Colin said. “I’m just looking forward to the feeling of the crowd lifting you up and just floating through. I’m finally getting my chance.”

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