Butterfield to race the world’s best
Tyler Butterfield will literally run his way into unknown territory when he makes his debut at the Lake Biwa Mainichi Marathon in Otsu, Shiga, Japan.
The Bermuda Olympian and professional triathlete is scheduled to make his first appearance in the 26.2 mile race on March 10 and is under no illusion as to the enormity of the task at hand competing against the world’s elite runners.
“That will be an elite marathon so for me it’s my first one ever outside of Commonwealth Games and its going to be a calibre way above my limit,” Butterfield said.
“I think it was won in around 2:06 or 2:07 last year so I’m going to be 15-20 minutes behind.
“But it’s a great opportunity to run with some of the best guys in the world. It’s going to be a lot of people better than me and I can challenge myself.”
The Lake Biwa Mainichi Marathon, a male only competition, is one of the prominent Japanese races of the year and the country’s oldest annual marathon.
Butterfield warmed up for March’s commitment in Japan with a solid display at last weekend’s Bermuda Marathon Weekend where he placed runner up in the adult mile, International 10K and Half Marathon to capture the Half Triangle Challenge title at the first attempt.
“The Bermuda Race Weekend was awesome and just a great hit out for the Lake Biwa Marathon,” he said. “It was great to come back and do the mile, 10K and the Half because I’ve actually never done that before.
“The last time I did the mile was actually when I set the high school record (1999) so I wanted to try and run a similar time.
“I was a little bit off but me and my brother (Spencer) had a bit of fun.”
Spencer Butterfield, who still holds the primary school mile record he set in 1993, also produced a solid display during the Bermuda Marathon Weekend. He pipped sibling Tyler for the win in the Challenge Mile and then finished ninth in the International 10K and seventh in the Half Marathon.
“It was a fun weekend and great to have Tyler here for it,” Spencer said. “He convinced me to participate as I haven’t done much running.”
Tyler added: “I wanted to encourage him and he did an amazing job in all three races and surprised me because he’s just been mainly doing cross training for some ski trips.
“He’s taken to that but he’s so talented at running that it’s nice to see him shine.”
Commenting on his sons’ performances, father and former triathlete Jim Butterfield said: “Debbie (mother) and I are very proud of both the boys.
“It was fun to see the next generation go out and have some fun and it was a beautiful weekend for the visitors.”
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