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July round up

There have been some huge achievements and performances from our members over the last few weeks. It’s long distance season now and lots of our clubmates have been out racing long!

Andy Burston fulfilled an ambition that has been the focus for the last few years, to become an Ironman, which he did at Ironman Bolton. Although the setting was a little different to where he was inspired watching the World Championships in Kona, Hawaii, an Ironman is an Ironman (although there were probably less Hula skirts up north!). Andy finished in 15:13, a great time for his first (and hopefully not last?!) Ironman performance, a long day at the office given his alarm was set for 3:30AM! Carlos Gane was also at IM Bolton coming home in a great time of 13:11.

Deciding to race long and get a nice holiday at the same time Anthony Dale stormed to a big PB at IM Vitoria Gasteiz in northern Spain. Although Anthony now looks like a piece of crispy bacon the warm sunny day meant a perfect 20C for the swim. The shaded areas on the run were most welcome and without them a different story may have unfolded but Anthony came home in just under 14 hours, a great time.

Hannah Cooper also decided to go overseas for her first Ironman distance event at Ironman Hamburg. Last year’s edition was attended by club members but due to a blue-algae bloom the swim was cancelled and replaced with another run. This year there was no such bad luck (or luck?!) and Hannah completed her swim, bike run to become an Ironman for the first time.

There was a fair amount of drama at our “local” long distance event, the Outlaw. Despite Britain’s hottest ever day 2 days before, the rain and flooding on the bike course was so drastic the bike leg was cancelled while competitors were on the swim. This was clearly a very difficult, and ultimately correct, decision for the organisers to make but it was heart-breaking none-the-less. The event turned into a 2.4mile swim followed by a rather long break and then a marathon. Most of the Rugby Triathlon Club contingent stayed for the marathon, but not all. After all, it wasn’t what they signed up for. Congratulations however to Paul Ellis, Matt Cleaver, Christine Broughan, Mike McGillion and Jen McGillion for completing the Outlaw. It will probably be a PB performance given the exclusion of the 112 mile bike ride!

As well as long distance triathlons a few members where on their feet for a long time with some big running events. Greg Ashley raced the 100km ultra marathon Race to the Stones just a week after completing Long Course Weekend – he never stops! The event goes from The Chilterns through the North Wessex Downs to the finish line at Stonehenge, good for photos!

Not going quite as far, but making up for it by climbing a mountain, Paul Albon and Andy Boon took on the Snowdonia Trail Marathon. Andy (cleverly!) opted for the half marathon and Paul took on the marathon. Running the streets of Rugby does very little to prepare anyone for a run up at mountain! Paul had never walked a mountain (let alone “run” one!) and was somewhat caught out by the lack of pathway on the climb up. Andy’s quads weren’t particularly happy with the pounding they took on the way down the mountain! Paul countered this effect by slowly ambling down! Both agreed it’s a phenomenal event though.

Other members took on other multi-discipline events. Barry Hale had an “interesting” time swimming against the tidal river at the Fambridge Yacht Club Middle distance event. Despite a less than successful swim upstream he completed the event in preparation for his longer adventures later in the year. Becky Wheaver finally managed to take part in her first open water triathlon (after cancelations) at the Go-Tri Super Sprint at Mallory Park. Hywel Davies won his age group and was first Brit at the ADH Duathlon (Allgemeiner Deutscher Hochschulsportverband to the locals…!), as always impressive results from Hywel.

Neal Whitford ran a PB at the Asics London 10K. He was running it to raise money for the Prader-Willi Syndrome Association, a charity close to his heart. He was chasing down the 40-minute pacer but lost him towards the end, but a PB is a PB!

Josie Goodwin took part in the Shakespeare Swim, a 2.5k swim down the River Avon. The event was a success for Josie and not just because of the bacon sandwich at the end!

As well as all this (and more) racing and competing over the last few weeks Rugby Triathlon Club did a Parkrun takeover at Rugby Parkrun. The club took on all the volunteer roles and fielded lots of pacers too to help the runners. Despite some questionable tactics towards the end the pacers all did quite well, Ian Moser and Adrian Wyatt getting within single digits of the planned time.

Next up is the Club Middle Distance Championships at the Cowman…

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