Malachi Cashmore timed his British Championship race to perfection in 2022, even if his entrance into the event was a tad last minute.
Cashmore, 20, was crowned Male 20-24 British Middle Distance Triathlon Champion in one of several standout moments for the Malvern ace across an impressive year.
However, after weeks of training and preparation, his place on the start line had to be arranged hastily.
“A few days before the race, I was looking through the start list and scrolling down I realised I was not actually entered in the race,” said Cashmore.
“I sent a quick message on Instagram and thankfully they were able to give me an entry on the day, which was really lucky - otherwise I wouldn’t have even been racing.”
His place in the race secured, Cashmore exited the swim 15 second behind the leading pack before a strong bike leg saw him move towards the front of the field. A strong running leg then saw his hard work pay off as he came out on top.
He added: “I got really steady, and I ran with Ben [Goodfellow] for a bit. He wanted to speed up and I wasn’t fast enough, so he ran off and I held the gap to him.
“He was about 20-30 seconds ahead of me on the straight, but when we got to about 10k left he slowly started coming back and I started to feel good.
“I’ve been working on my nutrition with my coach all year, I was having three gels on the run and it seemed to be paying off as at the end of the run I was speeding up.
“My last 5k was just under 17 minutes, which is not too bad. I overtook Ben and finished really strongly to become age group champion.
“It was a nice surprise because at the moment, you’re never too sure if you’ve won, even if you were first over the line, with the time trial format.
“At the end of the race I was pretty certain that I’d won, but when someone told me I was the age group champion I was really happy.”
There are a variety of triathlon, paratriathlon and multisport opportunities for British Triathlon Home Nation members to become national champion in 2023, as well as English, Scottish and Welsh Championship titles and medals on offer.
And away from his domestic success, the 20-year-old also made his mark abroad, finishing in the top 50 - and in the top ten for his age group - at the IRONMAN 70.3 World Championships in Utah.
And looking ahead in 2023, continued improvement and a potential move to professional racing are among his targets.
Cashmore said: “It [Utah] was a really good course, the roads over there are so smooth and some of the hills are really fast.
“I went out the day before to go round the first part of the course and there was a storm, it was so windy.
“It was really scary but going down one of the hills I did 60.1mph, which is the fastest speed they’ve ever had on that course. It was pretty amazing but I think I could do better.
“I came ninth in my age group in the world, which is good for only my first season. I’m happy with that but Matthew Collins, who I’d beaten at the Outlaw British Champs race, beat me in Utah by about two minutes. I’d like to be a bit closer to him, I’ll do a few more races with him this year.
“I’m looking to do mostly the Outlaw 70.3 races. I’ve been looking to be accepted into Team Outlaw so I’m going to be looking at racing their races and hopefully get a pro licence.
“Usually, two of their races each year are pro licence races, and the first non-pro finisher gets a licence to be able to race and to win prize money. I’m aiming to do those races and hopefully try and win a few.”
Find out more about representing the Great Britain Age-Group Team and competing in British Age Group Championships on the link below: https://www.britishtriathlon.org/events/championships-and-qualifiers.
Images provided by athlete.