Local Businessman Eric Roy qualifies for the Ironman World Championship
Local businessman Eric Roy claimed victory in his age group at the Cambridge, Maryland, Ironman triathlon on September 28. With this win. Mr Roy has qualified to compete at the Ironman World Championships, which will be held in Hawaii on October 10, 2020.
An Ironman triathlon is made up of three distinct sections, a 3.8 km swim, a 180 km bike ride followed by a full 42 km marathon. This year’s Ironman Hawaii champion was former Olympic gold medallist Jan Frodeno, who completed the race in a record time of 7 hours and 51 minutes.
Roy, who owns Eric Roy Financial Services at 210 Aylmer Road, finished with an overall time of 9:23:050, eighteenth overall and first amongst men aged 45 to 49, edging out his closest competitor, the Brit Mark White, by over two minutes.
This victory comes after an 8-year hiatus from the sport, which Roy explains came from a need to be there for his family.
“At that point I had already competed in 21 Ironman’s. Injuries were piling up and my kids were very young, so I decided to take a break and focus on balancing things between home and the business for a bit. Around the beginning of the year, the bug bit me again. I started training and six months ago was back in the game. I’m really happy with the results,” said Roy to the Bulletin.
The result is particularly impressive considering the 46-year-old bruised his ribs two weeks prior to the competition, after crashing his bike while on a ride with his son in Gatineau Park.
Roy believes that his sporting career contributes greatly to his business life. “Between work ethics, time management, rigid attention to detail and a constant desire to improve, sport allows for a great amount of growth, both as a person and as a professional.”
When asked about his role models in sport, the local businessman says that he has always looked up to Dave Scott and Mark Allen, both multiple-time Ironman winners, as well the famous Rocky Balboa, laughingly expressing that “You can rest assured that my workout playlist has the entire soundtrack of Rocky 4 on it.”
A former hockey player in his youth, Roy’s life changed around the age of fourteen after seeing the Hawaii Ironman triathlon on television. “I was fascinated with how these athletes could swim, bike and run a marathon so fast. It was like a voice inside me told me I had to do this.”
Roy began competing at the age of 15 and has since earned himself two major overall victories, one in Montreal in 2003 and another in Cambridge, Maryland in 2008, before stepping away from the sport in 2011.
Next year’s race will mark the second time Roy has competed in Hawaii, nearly 20 years after his first race on the big island. Roy’s goals have not diminished through time, though. When asked about his goals for next year’s big race, he stated, “I would like to beat the time I set in 2000, for in a place like Hawaii where weather conditions play such a huge role, beating the nine and half-hour mark would be fantastic. Ideally, I would love to finish among the ten best in the world in my age group.”