A tough course and hot conditions combined to produce a memorable British Age-Group Middle Distance Triathlon Championship race on Sunday.
‘The Gauntlet’, part of the Festival of Endurance at Hever Castle from the Castle Triathlon Series was the host of the championships this year. Already renowned for its beautiful, but very challenging course, the current heat wave ensured that any medals collected in Kent on this day would have to be earned the hard way.
To further add to the challenges, the water temperatures meant that the day would start with a 1.9km non-wetsuit swim. The front of the men’s race would see a very close battle, with Sam Wade finally emerging as the champion in the final stages of the run, closely followed home by Sam Pictor and Thomas Davis. Having already overall won the Triathlon England Sprint Distance Championship (Thorpe Park) and the British Standard Distance Championship (Leeds), Sam is having a brilliant 2018 season across all distances. We asked him about his day at Hever Castle:
“The race was fast-paced from the start and after getting out the swim near the front, I soon found myself in a tight contest with Tom Davis on the bike. The tough, hot and hilly conditions started to get to me and I was passed by Sam Pictor, who set about putting time into me before the 21k run leg. I felt first place may have gone at this point, but I stayed focussed and managed to catch Sam with just over 5km to go and finished strong to take the win”
While the top three men were separated by less than two minutes, the women’s race was dominated by Catherine Jameson who set the fastest times in all three disciplines, to take first place by more than 15 minutes. After coming a close second a week ago at the Outlaw Half Holkham Triathlon, Claire Weller was part of another battle at Hever Castle, but this time she got to the finish just 14 seconds ahead of Kate Mactear. Those few seconds would prove crucial, allowing Claire to take home the Gold medal in the F25-29 category.
A regular at the Castle Triathlon Series events, we spoke to Catherine Jameson about her race:
“It was a last minute decision for me to race yesterday as I wasn't planning to do a Middle Distance race until later in the year. I felt I had a solid race after losing quite a bit of time on the bike due to a mechanical issue. The course itself is brutal, but beautiful. It tests you to your limits but the organisation and support on course is amazing. I love all the races in the Castle Triathlon Series and would highly recommend them to all athletes, no matter if you are a first-timer or a season Pro."
The Gauntlet, Festival of Endurance at Hever Castle – Sunday 8th July 2018: British Age-Group Middle Distance Triathlon Championships (1.9km / 90km / 21km)
1st – Sam Wade (Team PedalCover) – 4:32:07 (AG 25-29)
2nd – Sam Pictor (BAD Tri) – 4:33:26 (AG 25-29)
3rd – Thomas Davis (Race Hub / LTPC) – 4:33:59 (AG 20-24)
1st – Catherine Jameson (Team PedalCover) – 5:04:07 (AG 30-34)
2nd – Claire Weller (Ipswich Triathlon Club) – 5:19:33 (AG 25-29)
3rd – Kate Mactear (University of Bristol) – 5:19:47 (AG 25-29)
2018 British Age-Group Middle Distance Triathlon Champions
|20-24||Amy Harris||Thomas Davis|
|25-29||Claire Weller||Sam Wade|
|30-34||Catherine Jameson||Rob Arkell|
|35-39||Lindy-Lee Folscher||Dan Blake|
|40-44||Kerry Mcgawley||Charles Pennington|
|45-49||Lucy Walmsley||Paul Mason|
|50-54||Gwen Bevan||Dean Ratcliffe|
|55-59||Juliet Vickery||Stuart Mills|
|60-64||Glenda Goscomb||Nicholas Holmes|