Allan to defend Challenge Wanaka title
Challenge Wanaka champion Dougal Allan is feeling good.
‘‘It’s the Wanaka effect,’’ he said last week, as he relaxed in the Albert Town home of friends Will and Joy Harvey.
The multisporter, now based in Oamaru, had brought his family back to their familiar stomping ground for the business end of his training for Challenge Wanaka.
He had just completed a 45km bike ride and one hour swim and was planning a shakedown in the Sovereign Tri series race the next day (he finished second behind Hayden Wilde).
Last year Allan moved with wife Amy and son Flynn, 2, to Oamaru, seeking a more affordable lifestyle so he could be a full-time athlete.
They love their new town and are gently finding their feet in North Otago’s sporting community.
Daughter Matilda, four months, has also joined the Allan family nest.
Allan has an Otago University Physical Education degree and for some years now has been working under endurance coach Val Burke’s umbrella, offering online
in coaching and personal strength training.
The former Southern Lakes Multisport Club president has joined the Oamaru Multisport Club and is steadily building up his own stable of triathletes, runners and multisporters.
‘‘Since being in Oamaru and being more of a professional athlete, I have more time in the day and put a bit more into my coaching.
‘‘The funny thing is I coach more people from Southern Lakes than I do in Oamaru. And I coach an athlete from Perth.
‘‘Almost all are doing a Challenge Wanaka, an Ironman New Zealand, a Red Bull Defiance or a Coast to Coast event. I would say about 75 percent contact me through my website but how they make that initial decision to choose me, I don’t know,’’ he said.
Allan says it was not until he left Wanaka, where has lived for the best part of 10 years, that he realised the town was full of over achievers.
‘‘Wanaka has unique people. You don’t realise it until you go away and come back.
‘‘You only have to go for a walk around the lake to see everyone training like they are a professional athlete.’’
The Allan family, from left, Matilda, Dougal, Flynn and Amy.