KEEPING LIONEL ON TRACK. Q AND A WITH DAVID TILBURY DAVIS
ORIGINALLY FROM GREAT BRITAIN, DAVID TILBURY DAVIS GOT HIS START IN THE TRIATHLON WORLD AT LOUGHBOROUGH UNIVERSITY, THE HOME OF THE BRITISH TRIATHLON ASSOCIATION. A FORMER RUGBY AND AMERICAN FOOTBALL PLAYER (WHO KNEW THE U.K. WAS INTO THAT STYLE OF FOOTBALL?), TILBURY DAVIS TURNED TO CYCLING AND TRIATHLON AFTER A KNEE INJURY FORCED HIM TO LOOK FOR A MORE “LINEAR” SPORT.
By the late ’90s he was spending a lot of time coaching and in 2008 gave up a career in the banking world to pursue coaching full-time. He moved to The Woodlands, Tex., in 2013 and now lives in Seattle, Wash. Tilbury Davis coaches about 16 athletes, many of whom are pros and works with Lionel Sanders and Cody Beals. Triathlon Magazine Canada caught up with Tilbury Davis ahead of this year’s Ironman World Championship.
How did you get started working with Lionel Sanders? DAVID TILBURY-DAVIS: I met Lionel at Ironman Texas the year he had a meltdown on the run. I introduced myself to him there. And then I think our paths have crossed over time at the odd race and I know he’s friends with Cody [Beals]. I remember after Kona last year Lionel said that he was he was looking for somebody to keep him on the straight and narrow.
So I got in touch with him and said, “Look, this is how I do things and this is how I feel I could help you. Do you feel that could work for you?”
We had a long conversation and he said, “Yeah, I think that’s what I need.”
So, pretty much just after Kona I started guiding him as best I could as he got ready for Arizona. And then, after Arizona in early December, I went up for a couple of days with him and since then I’ve been up to see him a couple of times and do some work face to face with him, either planning both the season and the process and the specificity of some of his training sessions.
I’m really just trying to help him make better decisions on a detailed level with his training. If you want to choose a
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