Butterfield on a high after Duffy triumph
As far as Tyler Butterfield is concerned, the pressure was off after Flora Duffy’s gold medal in the women’s triathlon.
“It was so exciting and seeing her win made the Games for me,” said Butterfield, who placed a respectable eighteenth in the men’s race that followed this morning.
“I’m sure everyone in Bermuda is on a high right now. It really didn’t matter whether I had a good or a bad race.
“I thought, ‘It’s just fun from now on’, even though I knew it was still going to hurt.”
Butterfield admits he had some initial nerves dropping down from the Ironman to sprint distance, but those fears proved unwarranted and he was satisfied with his performance.
The 35-year-old finished in an overall time of 55min 51sec, with splits of 9:32 for the 750-metre swim, 39:03 for the 20km bike and 16:03 for the 5km run.
“My race was actually pretty straightforward,” he said. “The swim was how I thought it was going to go with the start position I had.
“The beginning of the run hurt the most after riding so hard … mainly just my hamstrings. I’m happy with my race because I wasn’t sure how it would go.”
Butterfield will now focus on the mixed team relay, his main reason for making the long trip to the Gold Coast.
“I actually think we have a good team,” the Colorado-based athlete said. “Riding the course, I know I improved with each lap. The first lap I was breaking every corner and then realised I didn’t need to. We [the Bermuda team] will have a good show.”
The two-times Olympian was also fulsome in his praise for Tyler Smith, who was making his bow at the Commonwealth Games. The 19-year-old came three places behind Butterfield in 21st.
“I’m sure Tyler wanted a little better because he had a good swim,” said Butterfield, who was nineteenth at the 2014 Glasgow Games.
“When you can taste it and it slips away, it’s harder than for someone like me who goes away at the start and claws his way back.
“For his first Commonwealth, I thought he did amazing. It’s been nice being part of the group with Tyler, Flora and Erica [Hawley].
“I’m definitely seeing the end of my days and the baton changing.”
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