Mark's team, now consisting of ironman Guy Andrews and triathlete Darren Clarke started the day just over an hour behind the overnight leaders, locals Mark Padgett and Mark Hinder of Team Iron House.
But a strong performance across the day’s 91 competitive kilometres, combined with a day of drama for the leaders, saw Andrews and Clarke move to within 31 minutes of the lead.
And experienced adventure racer, Andrews, was clearly delighted with his team’s day.
“We were quite surprised to see Mark Padgett (Team Iron House) make a bit of an error on the optional bike course and we got a bit of a lead and we haven’t seen many people all day except for the Renault Garmin boys,” Andrews said. "So, we’ve had a good day, just kept racing our own race.
“We watched the other teams make surges and try to drop us and they went and made navigation errors. This is a long race, with a lot of fatigue, and that influences decision making too."
Webber might be away, but he clearly still has the team's interests at heart.
“The day he left the race, the first thing I had was a tweet from @AussieGrit, Mark Webber himself, saying good luck today," Andrews revealed.
“I’ll definitely be sending him a message and tell him how we went today. Yesterday I didn’t feel like we had much to report but at least today we can say we’ve made a move, do him a bit proud.”
The Padgett and Hinder combination had a day they would rather forget. On the first leg, , the pair had to stop and empty their kayak after taking on water on the crossing.
But things went from bad to worse on the next leg, a 25-kilometre mountain bike to Adventure Bay, when they got lost and finished up bush bashing with their bikes over their shoulders to get back on course. Despite losing an hour, the pair clawed back some of their losses over the final four stages.
OVERALL TOP FIVE – totals after Day Three including all penalties and credits (provisional)
1. Team Iron House – 9h52m06s
2. Team Renault-Garmin 1 – 10h15m22s
3. Team Pure Tasmania – 10h22m53s
4. Team Tasmania – 10h23m59s
5. Team Renault-Garmin 2 – 11h15m49s
The field take to the Hartz Mountains on Saturday and finish in Hobart on Sunday. Find out more at www.markwebbertasmaniachallenge.com
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- Competition: Share a NASCAR with David Coulthard at the Red Bull Racing show run