The final weekend of what has been an amazing April was marked by two long running favourite events and a terrific double victory in a relatively new form of racing which more club members will no doubt want to try in the coming months.As well as the Parkrun times we had two notable results at the Uventure obstacle course race in Kettering, Northamptonshire where George and Lynette Houghton were competing. Held three times over the summer months, it offers three distances, with a 3.5km junior race, a 6km adult beginners course and a 12km full distance special for seasoned obstacle course racers with obstacles including water slides, cargo nets and A-frames. George impressed by winning the junior race while Lynette was first in her category at the 12km distance. The next event in the series is scheduled for Saturday 14 July which should serve as an intriguing preamble to Ironman UK.
The two main events of the weekend took place on the Sunday, with the rearranged Oulton Park Spring Duathlon on the same day as the Mold Sprint Triathlon. At the Little Budworth circuit Che and Myka Heard took on the sprint distance, the former enjoying his post-Ironman “speed” season, the latter taking on her first race since returning from injury. She used it to excellent effect with a bike split very close to beating the 40 minute mark, indeed were it not for a disrupted build up she may well have been a contender for an age group win. Asit was she finished 110th and 3rd in her age group in a time of 1:24:10, while Che demonstrated tremendous improvements particularly on the two run stages as he made it home in under 70 minutes, 37th overall placing him fifth in his division. Full results are not yet available at e time of writing but Emma Austin was not only first junior lady home, but received the news on the same day from British Triathlon that her performance earlier in the month at Loughborough had earned her a place at the ITU Junior race in Leeds on 10 June when several club members will join her in the age group events.
Also making the trip to the England/Wales border was Nick Hall who took part in the Chester Half Marathon and ran a clever, negative split race to finish inside the top 4,000 with a time of 2:17:56, while closer to home Charley Devaynes competed in the Sefton Community Triathlon hosted by Epic Events at T1 level and showed promise especially during the final stage to complete the mixed terrain course in 31:30. Meanwhile Dave O’Connell ventured much further afield as he took on Ironman 70.3 in Marbella. Dave got off to a cracking start on the swim averaging under two minutes per 100 metres and carried his form through the bike leg and into the early stages of the run. The heat made for a tiring final few miles but he still completed the challenge in just over six hours which on another day may well have landed him in the top 1,000.