TRIATHLON: Members make the most of last weekend’s good weather

Andy Burston, Anthony Stinton, Laura McCrystal, Matthew Cleaver, Shane Owen and Beverley Graham-Older at the Bedford 20
Andy Burston, Anthony Stinton, Laura McCrystal, Matthew Cleaver, Shane Owen and Beverley Graham-Older at the Bedford 20

Rugby Triathlon Club

Rugby Triathlon Club took full advantage of the good weather this weekend with lots of members racing - and winning - this weekend.

Mark Palmer and Paul Lee won their age groups and James Daly was second in his age group at the Battlefield Duathlon at Naseby

Mark Palmer and Paul Lee won their age groups and James Daly was second in his age group at the Battlefield Duathlon at Naseby

Racing at the inaugural Bedford 20, six of Rugby Triathlon Club’s athletes used the event as a training run towards their upcoming spring marathons.

The athletes ran on the very flat route taking in many of the cycle paths and parks in Bedford.

Shane Owen led home the Rugby Triathlon Club contingent in 2:38:09. Matthew Cleaver (2:53:35), Andrew Burston (2:57:42), Anthony Stinton (3:07:02), Laura McCrystal (3:27:50) and Beverley Graham-Older (3:40:52) made up the rest of the club’s competitors at the event.

George Goodwin started his season as he finished his last with another superb performance.

Scottish Duathlon Champion George Goodwin (centre) on the top of the podium at Stirling

Scottish Duathlon Champion George Goodwin (centre) on the top of the podium at Stirling

George became Scottish Duathlon Champion with victory at the Scottish Duathlon Championships in Stirling in a time of 1:58:09.

This is a great confidence boost for George who will be travelling to Italy to race in the Challenge Roma 70.3 in April where he’ll be expecting a little warmer weather.

James Gibb was the first Rugby Triathlon Club member to brave an actual triathlon in Britain for 2018 at the East Leake Triathlon.

Luckily the sun was shining and so the bike leg wasn’t 40 minutes of frozen torture! After a frustrating swim behind some slower participants, James raced well to finish third in his age group, 11 seconds behind the second place athlete in 1:10:01.

James Daly

James Daly

While we were all sleeping, Hywel Davies was finishing second overall and first in his age group at the Keilder Night Marathon in Northumberland.

Hywel beat the previous overall course record by 10 minutes and the age group record by 30 minutes!

The route has over 2000ft of elevation and is set in a gold tier ‘Dark Sky Park’ - meaning on clear nights you could run it without a head torch and be guided by the stars. He finished in 2:56:16 at this unique event.

The Battlefield Duathlon at Naseby was a great event for the three Rugby Triathlon Club athletes who raced, all finishing on the podium in their respective age groups.

The out and back run and hilly course didn’t stop Mark Palmer and Paul Lee winning their age groups in 1:46:47 and 1:48:23, respectively.

James Daly finished 2nd in his age group in 1:33:10. Tom Greeves set the fastest run split of the day with an 18:30 5k but unfortunately punctured on the bike course and was unable to complete the race.

On the bike this weekend Tony Johnson completed the Cheshire Cat sportive in 7:50:32.

The sportive is a gruesome 110-mile tour of Cheshire and Staffordshire with a whopping 5500ft of climbing. To add some challenge to the event the route takes in the toughest hills in the counties, one of which has a ‘punchy’ gradient of 28%.

Competing at the British Standard Distance Duathlon Championships at the Bedford Autodrome, Andrew Boon finished ninth in his age group in 2:02:18.

Racing around the traffic-free course Andrew was competing against the best duathletes in the country.

Participating in the Combe Gibbet to Overton Race, Alex Griffiths took 2:53:26 to complete the 16-mile cross country run.

The stunning and challenging course ventures across the Berkshire and Hampshire countryside.

Representing Rugby Triathlon Junior Club, Tom Tyler competed at the BCT March Aquathlon in the Tristar 3 category.

The event consisted of the 300m pool swim and a 3k off-road run along a disused railway.

Tom won his age group with his rapid run speed allowing him to take victory by 8 seconds in 16:22. This event was the first of the West Midlands Triathlon Series.