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How I Qualified For 70.3 Worlds: Melissa Davidson

Meet 70.3 world championship qualifier Melissa Davidson.

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Over the next few days we’ll introduce you to a mix of age-group triathletes who all punched their tickets to Vegas—some in more harrowing circumstances than others. The athletes also give training advice that helped them get to the level they are at today. The 2012 Ironman World Championship 70.3 race will take place on Sept. 9, 2012 in Henderson, Nev. Check back to Triathlete.com for complete coverage from the race.

Melissa Davidson
Age: 38
Qualified: 8th at Ironman 70.3 Boise

Davidson has had bad luck at Ironman 70.3 Boise. Last year, about 35 miles into the bike, a fellow racer hit her from behind, sending her and her bike hurtling to the pavement at 20 mph. She was sent to the emergency room for her extreme case of road rash, which kept her from racing till two and a half months later.

This year, Davidson, who hails from the tiny town of Victor, Idaho, showed up to freezing temperatures, pelting rain, high winds and a bike course shortened from 56 to 12 miles. “I lucked out this year,” she says. As soon as the shortened course was announced that morning, “people were just pouring out of there. They wussed out and left. But I went there to race and I didn’t care what the conditions were like.” She finished eighth in her age group and nabbed a roll-down spot.

With a competitive swimming background, she raced triathlon in college, took a 10-year hiatus and has now been racing the past five years. She fits her workouts in while working full-time doing social media for an attractions marketing company (if you’re wondering, the attractions are in 10 major cities around the U.S., not in Victor). This will be her first time to race a world championship.

The takeaway: “Just keep persevering,” she says. “Be patient. I think it takes a lot of years to dial in being good at triathlon. I don’t think it’s something you just acquire overnight. It takes a lot of hard work, a lot of pounding the pavement every day of the week year-round.”

Read other Ironman World Championship 70.3 qualifying stories.