When he turned eight, a wealthy family decided to leave for Australia their homestead. He eventually moved with his mother to the country’s Northern Territory, and raised a family. At age six, the family home caught fire, and he managed to escape unharmed. By the time he was a teenager, he got a job as a logger and an electrician in the mining industry. “My upbringing just saw my career choices, and I knew if I’m interested in something, then there’s a chance I can do it,” McNeill told the Scot Free newspaper.
But when a buddy of his father passed away in 2005, the 78-year-old McNeill had to take a job as a mechanic to pay the bills. But then he got the call that an ex-colleague had set up an off-road triathlon in Eromanga, Australia. Today, McNeill is competing in his eighth triathlon, and looks to continue the success of his friend who set up the race.
“He got a really high result here last year, was very upset, and got quite upset again after this year’s race. He said, ‘You’ll win this time, Bobby,'” McNeill said. “There’s no doubt the Eromanga race can be a championship event.” The race incorporates walking, cycling, and swimming distances, all in the Darwin region of Australia.
Along with all the exercise, McNeill, who is grandfather to one and has 13 great-grandchildren, makes sure he eats right: “If I’d had a less-than-perfect training program coming into the race, I wouldn’t have done as well as I did,” he said. “I made sure that the nutrition plan we put in place had a bit of fat content in it, and a lot of vegetables.”
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