On Saturday the 1st of June 9 Tipp wheelers members travelled to Athy to compete in the triathy Olympic and sprint distance triathlon. The weather conditions were perfect with little or no winds sunny and dry. Over 2100 competitors took part over the day in the different distances it had to offer. The Olympic distance waves started at 10am and we had a nervous Claire Devitt to start and show us the way. Well I suppose ladies first! Another 9 wave of 100 athletes took off in 10 minutes intervals which made the route a very busy one. The swim course consisted of 1500m. This was an up and down in the local river. 600m up stream with thankfully a very slight current and the remainder 900m downstream to the first transition. The water temperatures thankfully were not to cold and the lads reported that after a couple hundred meters they were well warmed up.
The 40km cycle for the Olympic distance was a slightly technical one on closed roads, with a large mix of secondary back roads, a few right angle turns, sharp inclines, and two turn arounds which did not allow cyclist to maintain a continuous speed for too long. Having the right set of wheels made a big difference to people’s times on the day. So the lads had to choose their weapons wisely!
Back into transition 2 after dropping off the bike, slipping on the runners, and venturing into the 10km run. The first 2k of it was on the roadside with a slight incline, leading down a narrow lane and entering on to the river bank. The next 6k was tough running on the uneven narrow grassy margin. A lot of the lads found the run tough and one had to be alert as there was a turn around halfway. This meant that runners were coming both directions battling for the best side to run on and the centre of the bank seemed to be everyone’s choice, you could say it was a bit like the bumpers cars at your local carnival. However the last 2km was back on a tarmac surface and automatically the pace came back into our legs and made it to a speedy finish line where we were greeted by hundreds of spectators, and handed a well earned banana and bottle of water.
Later on that evening we had two lady members both Denise Compton and Martina Byrnes who entered half of the Olympic which is called the sprint distance. A 5 pm start and in wave one the girls got off to a very warm and early start. As you can see below in one of the pictures the girls unknowingly had their photograph taken in the water start by the fit magazine which is a supplement in Thursdays Independent. (See can you spot them!) The girls had a great race and it was Denise that got out of the water in 10mins for the 750m swim, with Martina on her heals in 13.20, Martina passed Denise on the fast 20km out and back course which took her into a 2 min lead into the run. But it was Denise’s strong run finish that brought her to take the lead and finish 1 minute ahead of Martina.
Overall the lads had a fantastic day out and a very well done to Paddy O Callahan, Denis Cremins, and Richie English which this event was only their second Olympic distance.
First home for the club in the Olympic was Tommy Byrnes in 2hrs 22mins on his heels and less than 30 seconds later was Noel Ryan in 2hrs 22mins, Denis Cremins 2hrs 32mins Claire Devitt 2hrs 32mins and 4thlady in her category, The ever improving Sean Bryan 2 hrs32min,( it was very tight between the three of them), Paddy O Callahan 2hrs 39mins, Richie English 2hrs 46mins.
Denise Compton had a fantastic time of 1hr 16mins 110th position 10th woman, and Martina Byrnes 1hr 17mins 131st position 11th woman and taking into account nearly 900 people took part in the