Amputee joins in challenge for MS

Andy Gibb gets ready for the Hatch Ocean Ride for multiple sclerosis. Picture: Marcelo Palacios www.communitypix.com.au d409485
Andy Gibb gets ready for the Hatch Ocean Ride for multiple sclerosis. Picture: Marcelo Palacios www.communitypix.com.au d409485

Mr Gibb decided to compete in triathlons after he saw his daughter competing.

His daughter, Katy Gibb, was the State triathlon champion.

‘I was watching her compete and thought ‘I could do that’,’ he said.

‘I try to set an example for other amputees; because you are missing a part of your body doesn’t mean you should just sit around doing nothing. It keeps me out of mischief.’

Mr Gibb (62) said he was involved in a motorcycle accident 44 years ago and lived with severe pain and infection until he voluntarily had his leg amputated across the knee nine years ago.

‘I only wish I did it earlier,’ he said.

Mr Gibb was part of the Australian team that went to London for this year’s World Championship and said it was an amazing experience despite him not placing well.

‘However, I was 26 years older than the average competitor and the next oldest was in his 40s,’ he said.

Mr Gibb said the only downside of the competition was when he swallowed something during the swim leg.

‘I’m not sure what it was but my stomach did not like it and there was what could best be described as an emergency evacuation of everything I’d recently eaten,’ he said.

‘Despite that, I ended up finishing 17th, and beat my previous best time by 29 minutes.’

Mr Gibb also competed in the 640km mountain bike Gibb River Challenge

He said he wanted to keep competing as long as possible and hoped to surpass the oldest triathlon competitor aged 74.

He said the Hatch Ocean Ride for multiple sclerosis last Sunday, October 20, constituted an easier challenge.

‘I’ve got friends with MS and unfortunately a few other friends with MS have passed away, so I like to get involved in the ride and raise money for such a good cause,’ he said.