Just when you thought news couldn’t get even more fresh – here’s a Race Report published before the weekend.

Now pick yourself up off the floor, grab a cuppa and calm down.

As we place bets on London shutting down in the grip of the mildly wintery weather, two of our club’s speedy female athletes decided to head somewhere warmer and race. And the breaking news is they both did rather well.

Ironman’s 70.3 in Dubai features a single lap 1.9km swim in the Arabian Gulf, a very fast, flat 90km bike (out through the dunes), and a 1.5 lap half marathon to finish. The biggest challenge for athletes heading from 4’C UK is almost certainly adjusting to the weather – at least 27’C midday. Despite this challenge, Sarah Lewis and Carolina Lanza had fantastic races.

Sarah Lewis (a sort of unseen club legend) currently races as a professional triathlete, and set off in a field of 9 other female pro triathletes. Emerging 4th from the swim, there was clearly a battle over the following two legs. Despite placing 5th at the end of an eye-wateringly fast bike, Sarah’s 3:50 min/km (!) run won her 3rd place on the Female Pro podium, 3rd woman overall, and well within the top 2% of all competitors.

Carolina has been stealthily making inroads into middle and long course racing success over the last few years, and Dubai appears to have been another step in this direction. After a solid swim, a fast bike and well paced run saw her climb the places to finish 8th in her Age Group – that’s 8th out of 85 competitors, so a truly great result – and well within the top third of the entire race field.

Well done both, enjoy the beach, and don’t get arrested!