Born and raised in the beautiful country of Northern Ireland, Heather started swimming competitively from a young age. She took to it like a ‘duck to water’ for want of a better phrase.
It wasn’t until she went to college in Bath, England in 2000 triathlon started to become a focus for her. Initially it was the social aspect, little girl from Northern Ireland venturing to study and live in England, moving away from all who she knew and loved from home. It wasn’t long before it became competitive for Heather whereby in 2001, she started to take things up a notch and race competitively resulting in winning the Irish standard triathlon distance championships in 2004.
Things then progressed whereby Heather represented her ‘wee country’ at the Commonwealth Games in Melbourne alongside the likes of Flora Duffy (ahem…2016, 2017 ITU World Triathlon Series World Champion, 2015 & 2016 ITU Cross Triathlon World Champion and 4-time winner of the XTERRA World Championships). So Heather was keeping great company and rightly deserved.
Injury played its role whereby she was forced to focus on cycling…once again success followed her, and she won the Irish Road Cycling Championships and set Irish Time Trial records. The cycling also took her to the Commonwealth Games in Delhi 2010 whereby she rode on the road, TT and track with getting 5th in the points race.
Then it was time to get married to Desi and enjoy the twins coming along in 2013, Oliver and Grace… both oozing personality, which is no surprise given their parents. With work as a Pharmacist and a busy Mum to the twins Heather returned to triathlon in 2014 for fun…fun? This rarely is the case for such accomplished athletes like Heather. Yep, she was back to winning ways. Actually, they had never gone. The pause button was just on whilst other life changing events took place.
In 2015 she won the first of her duathlon championships and subsequent years 2016, 2017, 2018 and the recent duathlon championship at the end of March 2019. In 2016 she won the Middle-Distance Championships and in 2017 she won sprint and standard distance championships. For a period, she held all four titles at once. The duathlon, the sprint distance, the standard and the middle distance. With her biggest fans…Oliver and Grace…waiting for her on the side lines and cheering her on what else is a Mum meant to do…but win.
Heather's next big race (for fun!) will be the Middle-Distance Championships in June where she will be going for a third title in this distance. From Pactimo we wish Heather all the best for June and for what the future has in store for her.