After last week’s solo racer report, we’re back on track with a weekend of mountains, fast cycling, mud, tunnels and triathlon records.
Swiss Alps 100
This looked both a beauty and a brute of a run. Based in the Swiss mountains, 3 options were available: 50km; 100km and 160km (running through the night). In such spectacular mountain scenery it is perhaps unsurprising that the climbing is somewhat severe.
Luke Hardman was out racing the 100km course, and, whilst he didn’t finish, he managed to make it 80% of the way – a truly heroic effort!
25 mile TT
The latest in the Great Missenden TT’s took place on Sunday – a great, mainly flat and fast route, and highly affordable compared to pretty much every other race out there.
We had 12 out racing: Sybille Schorm; Katie McCreadie; Eszter Szardeczky-Kardoss; Calum Williams; Phil Roker; Alistair Chappelle; Martin Bruwer; Alexie Calvert-Ansari; Karl Boehm; Mark Sempers & Richard Harper (as a 2-up team); Tim Lewis; and, Sarah Lewis.
Some fast racing by all, despite Eszter getting lost on the course – cue cards have been kindly suggested for next time!
Orro Gravel Cat
Out at Newbury Showground, Jim Pengelly was taking part in an off-road bike race. The Orro Gravel Cat Standard (43 miles) involves sections of Britain’s oldest road, The Ridgeway. The route “meanders its way through glorious rolling downland scenery, …through and around ancient woodlands, …sunken lanes and bridleways and through charming “stuck in time” villages complete with timber-framed buildings and thatched roofed cottages”. Jim completed the event in just over 4hrs.
From Jim: “The rain made quite a lot of the course muddy and there were all types from thin layers of super slippery through to deep boggy and everything in between… Really good event, very happy”
Bath Two Tunnels 10k
Helen Fagan was out racing the “UK’s Longest Underground 10km”on Sunday. From the race site: “Cutting right under the city of Bath, the two tunnels offer a truly unique running experience. The Somerset & Dorset Railway closed in 1966 and until April 2013 the tunnels have been sealed and inaccessible… the two tunnels now have a new lease of life as a shared use path. The first tunnel; The Devonshire Tunnel is 408m long and the second Combe Down Tunnel is 1672m long. Both tunnels are well lit, well surfaced, and have recently been converted into a shared use path for the enjoyments of runners, walkers and cyclists looking to make the most of the city whilst remaining a flatter ground”.
Whilst Helen doesn’t appear by name in the results published, she ran a solid race finishing just under 49min!
This instance of Ironman’s full distance race is probably one of their best. A cool lagoon swim with non-stinging jelly fish is followed by a mixed bike leg of long flat coastal road and rolling inland hills before a 4 lap flat marathon course within the city itself (with plenty of support) completes proceedings. It’s one of the fastest Ironman courses available. This year was the fastest in a while, with records being broken, including Anne Haug the German pro winner, and one of the highest proportions of athletes going sub-9hrs for some years.
Out racing for the club were: Matthew Phillips; John Borton; Rob Carder; and, Jon Green.
John claimed a massive win for the club, breaking the club record in just under 8hrs 47min, finishing 15th overall and just one shy of an age-group podium! It is perhaps unsurprising that this performance has earned him a Kona place!!
Jon was perhaps unlucky with some technical difficulties out on the course, but still achieved a very impressive 9hr 8min, and finished narrowly outside a top 10 A/C position, including 45th overall!
Matthew, for whom this was only his 3rd triathlon!?! managed a fantastic 9hr 54min, and placed well within the top 10% of the field!
Rob rounded things up with a great finish of 13hr 30min, no doubt roared home by the fantastic support on this course!!
Fantastic racing all – and I definitely recommend this race to anyone considering upgrading next season.
And that, again, is a wrap for the week gone by. As usual, please do email me at [email protected] if you’ve been missed or have upcoming races.