Iron Man drama ends well for ‘Chunky Man’

Alan McTernan was devastated when his bike chain broke Mw3GxrD677zVsLOTVo-8
Alan McTernan was devastated when his bike chain broke Mw3GxrD677zVsLOTVo-8

A BROKEN bike chain put paid to a charity challenge – but that did not stop Bognor Regis man Alan McTernan.

The self-designated Chunky Man to Iron Man was devastated when he had to pull out of the tough triathlon.

Alan, 38, was raising money for a friend and her two little girls, as she has recently been diagnosed with cancer for a second time.

He booked up for the Welsh Iron Man, which involves a sea swim of 2.4 miles, bike ride of 112 miles and run of 26.2 miles, all in succession.

Having completed a number of marathons, mammoth bike rides and the Exmoor Half Iron Man as training, he was ready for the big event at the end of September.

Close friend Jason Passingham said: “It all started well and he got off to a great start with his sea swim but disaster struck during the bike ride.

“After completing more than 100 miles, his chain snapped, so he regrettably had to pull out of the competition. This was not only devastating for him, but also his wife Clare who had been by his side throughout what had been a gruelling training programme.”

Disappointed, Alan signed up for the 2016 Welsh Iron the next morning, saying ‘me and Wales have some unfinished businesses’.

Feeling that he had not delivered what he had promised and let down the people who had shown him support, Alan also put himself on the waiting list for the Barcelona Iron Man on October 4.

Jason added: “It was with much surprise that he received the call to say he had got a place, so preparations began to fly out and compete. Not wanting to disappoint people for a second time, Alan kept his entry rather quiet, telling only family and a few close friends.”

The event proved to be a life-changing experience. Each stage went according to plan and after 14 hours and 31 minutes, Alan crossed the finish line, completing his journey from chunky man to iron man and raising £5,320.

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