BUCS Duathlon 2018
The Duathlon Championships at Castle Combe Race Circuit is the opening BUCS event for the year for the Triathlon Club. This year Swansea University took a team of 20 athletes to the event, with eight of the athletes competing in their first BUCS event for the University. The race consists of a 2-mile run, a 10-mile cycle around the racetrack and a second 2-mile run. This year there was 560 athletes competing from 42 different Universities. The days racing consisted of three waves; elite men, elite women and mixed. The elite men kicked off the days action at 12:55.
The weather produced almost ideal racing conditions with a mild temperature and no rain to be seen, the strong headwind along the back of the track was the only negative. As the run was sheltered from the wind it led to some quick times for the first run of two, with Club Captain Alex producing the fastest run split for the team with 11:42 for the 2 mile course. Adam was another athlete to go sub 12 minutes for the run with an 11:52. Vice-Captain Ben, Jacob, Jack, Harry, Christian, Diego and Arjun all produced sub 13 minute runs. Jemma was the fastest female for the club as she ran a 13:17 to start her race.
The wind played a massive role during the bike leg with half the course facing strong headwinds. Despite the conditions, everyone who raced the previous year either had the same time or was faster for this section. Alex and Ben completed the 10 mile bike course in 24:53 and 25:54 respectively for the fastest bike splits for the club, with India only a further minute behind ben with a 26:49 to be the fastest female in the team. All athletes completed the bike leg in under 33 minutes which is a fantastic achievement as some athletes had only had a month or two of riding competitively prior to this event.
The final became very competitive with inter club battles. The first was between Alex and Ben. Alex had a 1:20 lead over Ben at the beginning of the second run but like most races he’s done for the University, his final leg let him down cramping halfway round the run course. This lead to a very close ending with Alex only 6 seconds ahead at the finish.
Another close finish was between Lewis, Ryan and Diego who had been racing closely the entire race and all produced very even final runs to complete the course with only a 12-second spread across the three athletes. Adam produced a fantastic second run of 11:45, which was faster than his first run, and was the only Swansea athlete to go sub 12-minutes for the second run leg. Jemma produced another strong run and was the fastest female over the second run with a time of 13:53, 10-seconds faster than Cath who was next fastest.
Overall Jacob, who had completed a very consistent race, was the fastest Swansea Uni athlete with a time of 51:46, this was only his second race for the team. Alex was second and Ben third with times of 52:13 and 52:18 respectively. Cath was the fastest female Swansea Uni athlete as she completed the course in 57:53. By the end she had a lead of nearly 2-minutes over Emily who was second in a time of 59:51. Jemma, who finished only 14-seconds behind Emily in 1:00:05, was the third female home for the Uni. Joe Harper managed to produce a staggering time of 3:03:05 because he had forgotten to wear his timing chip for the race, but he did return it to avoid the £75 fine.
With several PB’s and a lot of first timers competing it was a successful day for the club and everyone left feeling pleased with their efforts.
The club now look forward to a winter of hard training in preparation for BUCS Sprint and Standard Triathlons in May and June next year and also the Varsity Triathlon against Cardiff.