James Phillips and Sarah Lewis take top honours at the British Triathlon Age-Group Sprint Distance Championships 2016


The Big Cow Sprint Triathlon delivers the first of three 2016 British triathlon championship distances, as fine weather and the predicted close racing over the Sprint distance at Emberton Park highlights a great day in Buckinghamshire.

Top quality athletes, fine weather and a proven and popular venue and course provided all of the required ingredients required for a cracking day of racing on Sunday to determine the medal winners at the first British Triathlon ‘triathlon’ Championships of the 2016 season.

The event also hosted an Oxford-Cambridge Varsity match, which ran alongside the British Championship race. 

The depth of quality can be readily evidenced by a quick scan of the results, which show that the top-15 men overall were separated by less than two minutes, with the top-10 women similarly close. It was top quality racing and worthy of its British Triathlon Championship status. Congratulations to everyone who made their category podiums today.

Last month James Phillips (Les-Stables ZEROD Race Team) finished fourth overall and took the Gold medal in his category (20-24) at the British Duathlon Championships in Windsor. He can now add to that the British Sprint Distance Triathlon Gold – with the added bonus of the fastest overall time of the day too.

Second fastest athlete overall was Edward Castro (Bedford Road Cycling Club), the 2015 British Triathlon Age Group Athlete of the year. Always exceptional in the water, Edward added a fine cycle leg to that too, with Phillips only overcoming his swim deficit thanks to a fantastic run. At the finish, they were separated by just 11 seconds, with Gary Hughes (Triteamglos) just four seconds further back. Edward and Gary took home Gold medals in the M25-29 and M30-34 categories, respectively.

While she will be more focused on longer distance racing in 2016, Sarah Lewis (Team Freespeed Skechers Performance) showed she has not traded endurance for speed, as she earned the top spot overall in the women’s race, along with the Gold medal in the F35-39 category. A class athlete, Sarah finished third overall in the same British Championship event two years ago when it was held at Eton Dorney.

Second overall today was Laura Fenwick (Oxford University). After a strong swim and one of the fastest bike times of the day, it took the day’s fastest run time from Sarah to overhaul Laura’s time. At the finish they were separated by just 17 seconds. Third overall (and F30-34 winner)was Elizabeth Bullivant (Racing TNT). To further highlight the depth of quality attracted to Emberton Park, Elizabeth is a long time member of the Great Britain Age-Group team, winning seven medals at European and World Championship level since 2010.

There were some great performances beyond the top finishers overall too. Michael Smallwood (Rugby Tri Club) produced a superb time of 1:14:41 to win the M70-74 category by over 13 minutes, while competition was incredibly close in the F60-64, with Anne Hughes (Beacon RCC) finishing just eight second ahead of Elizabeth Dunlop (Wight Tri).

The next British Triathlon Championship event follows in quick succession, with the Grafman Triathlon at Grafham Water on 22 May hosting the 2016 Middle Distance Championship. Look out for our preview of that later this week.

Big Cow Sprint Triathlon – Sunday 15th May 2016

British Triathlon Sprint Distance Championships 2016



1st – James Phillips (M20-24) – 59:00
2nd – Edward Castro (M25-29) – 59:11
3rd – Gary Hughes (M30-34) – 59:15

1st – Sarah Lewis (F35-39) – 1:06:16
2nd -  Elizabeth Bullivant (F35-39) – 1:07:38
3rd -  Rosie Weston (F17-18) - 1:07:49

Note: Laura Fenwick (F20-24) – 1:06:33  clocked the second  quickest female time of the day, however was competing in the Oxford-Cambridge Varsity match, not the British Sprint Distance Triathlon Championships. 

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