Long Course Races in 2010
Long Course Races 2010
After a victorious season in short-course triathlons, Durham’s Long Course Triathletes were out in force.
Long Course Triathlon is anything over 4km Swim, 120km bike and a 30km run. It culminates in Ironman Triathlon, which has begun to increase in popularity across the world. For two consecutive weekends, Durham was represented at Ironman distance races. An Ironman is about four times longer than a standard distance triathlon, and has long been hailed as one of the ultimate endurance events. You swim 2.4 miles, bike 112 miles and run a marathon (26.2 miles); in one go.
Joseph Wilson represented Great Britain in the European Long Course Championships held in Vitoria-Gastiez, Spain. After a superb swim time of 59.49 for 4km for which he was the 6th fastest Age Grouper and 1st in his Age group, he moved onto the challenging 120km bike. After only 20km he had a puncture and with a broken pump he managed to replace the tyre but only got about one third of the air he would normally have in it! This slowed him down for the next 100km and meant he had to push harder than would normally, which used up valuable energy. Joe was disappointed with his bike time of 3hrs 50. He was 4th in his Age Group. In long Course racing, it is always what you have done earlier in the race that comes back to haunt you. By pushing harder on the bike because of a sluggish tyre, he was less fresh going onto the 30km run. That and the heat slowed him down, and he finished the gruelling run in 2hrs 40mins, in 5th place for the European Long Course Championships with an overall race time of 7 hours 33 minutes. For Joe, this could be considered a lower point of the season! He continued to impress the triathlon world with an awesome result at the Outlaw Triathlon in Nottingham. This is a new Iron distance race for the UK, and no one really knew what to expect. Joe smashed the field with a 53 minute swim exiting the water in a great position to capitalise his power on the bike. This time he had no puncture and nailed a bike time of 5 hours 14 minutes. To quote Joe: ‘everything just went perfectly!’ He had set himself the goal of breaking the 3 hours 30 minutes in the marathon run. We can forgive him for a time of 3 hours 10 minutes and 01 seconds! Joe finished in 9 hours 52 minutes is the fastest iron distance time recorded by any Durham Athlete past or present and let him finish 7thoverall and won his age group by a huge margin! Joe has had one of the most successful seasons in the Tri Club this year it is such a shame that he is moving on.
In Switzerland, Philip Hatzis was looking to qualify for a place in the Ironman world Championships held in October in Hawaii after coming second in South Africa earlier in the year by 24 seconds. After a fast swim of 58 minutes and a blistering bike in 5 hours 6 minutes, he was in 3rd place starting the marathon, injury earlier in the year meant he did not have the pace he would have liked to have. He posted a 3.45 marathon time, crossing the line in 9 hours 52 minutes, a new PB, but it only managed to secure him a 4thplace. He said afterwards: even though it was a new PB in every discipline and he had knocked 1 hr 6 minutes of his time from last year, he was disappointed! Charlie Tucker, who is joining the Durham University Triathlon Club this year after transferring from Nottingham, knocked 45 minutes of his previous Ironman time breaking the 11.30 mark. He had suffered from bouts of illness throughout the key build phase of training which lost him a place to the Half Ironman World Championships and was delighted with his time. He is looking set for next year, and will make a helpful addition to the team.
In Bolton, UK, two athletes were about to start an Ironman race that will post one of the best results Durham University has seen in the triathlon club. Daniel Jenkins was going to embark on his second Ironman, and Ed Brett was about to lose his Ironman virginity! Daniel sad that his race preparation was not ideal as he had spent his time in South Africa watching the World Cup!
Daniel had a slightly slower swim time than Ed (1.09 compared to 1.06) and Ed’s lead extended by about a minute after 112 miles on the bike and Daniel was about 5 minutes down as he began the run. Each of them posting fast bike splits (6.02 and 6.03) on a course that was considered slightly long (even for an Ironman!) Ed was in 3rd position. Ed quickly overtook the 2nd place athlete to take 2nd but Daniel is a runner by trade, and stormed past Ed to have a ridiculously fast marathon (all things considered) of: 3hrs 04 minutes!!! This gave him an overall time of 10 hours 24 minutes. He was 1stin his Age Group. Ed flew round the hilly course in 3 hours 37 minutes. Ed crossed the line (possibly in tears!!) to blonde twins courtesy of Philip in 10 hours 51 minutes. This was a Durham one-two. The single best results the Tri club has ever seen. The implications of this could have been one step better but unfortunately, Daniel declined his slot to Hawaii to race in the Ironman World Championships, Ed however accepted. Although the Ironman world Championships occur every year, they are incredibly difficult to qualify for. What both Ed and Daniel achieved and what Ed is going to experience is something that very few Triathletes will ever get to experience, but something that almost every one of them wants to!
John Wright left Durham University two years ago, and was a member of the Triathlon Club. In Bolton, he finished his first Ironman in a time of 11 hours 50 minutes…not bad for an old dog! He crossed the line with a huge smile and is already thinking about signing up for another one next year…