Race Reports

Chilly Duathlon at Castle Coombe race track


At the end of my first season in Triathlon, I convinced myself that I had one race left in me - and so I signed up on the day for the Chilly Duathlon at Castle Coombe race track in Wiltshire. It seemed like a great idea with a 2 mile run, 10 mile cycle, and back for another 2 miles running. The course was on the Castle Coombe motor racing circuit - which at 2 miles in length, made the maths easy for the organisers.

I got there early, and was able to blag a quick lap of the track on my bike before they set up. Low lying fog quickly turned my cycling glasses in to a blurry waste of £15 - so they got binned into my kit bag when I got back to rack my bike. A good move as others would find later.

A quick briefing later, and a stern talking to from the BTF official about drafting (where everyone was given their first warning), we were sent off in a mass start. Starting at the back (as I thought I was a slow runner) meant that my ego got a boost as I quickly started passing other competitors. Towards the end of my 2 mile run, the leaders were already completing their first bike lap and envy propelled me into T1. Sodding shoe wouldn't come off - wasted 10s, got on the bike - forgot that I left it in a high gear after my test lap, another few secs wasted - and we're off on lap 1 - smile for the camera on exit.

5 laps later, my legs are still good and T2 seemed to go better. Ripped the top off a gel, and promptly sent most of it over my hands. Started the 2 mile run with sticky fingers - nice. Anyway, I stuck to my race plan and reeled in some more runners - and even caught the two guys that I thought had left me for dust in the first run. A final sprint for the line and home for tea and medals (no t-shirt).

Overall the race was really well organised with chip timing and lots of sponsors on site selling their wares. I'll be back next year.

Run 1: 16:41
T1:      01:14
Bike:   28:39
T2:      01:13
Run 2: 15:53
Total:   01:03:41

Andrew Lennox
Nuffield Health

Haywards Heath Marathon.... Really


06 May 12
Location: Beech Hurst Gardens, Haywards Heath, West Sussex  

Date: Sunday 6th May 2012   Time: 10.30 am

The Haywards Heath 10 Mile Race is the second in a three race series which together comprises the Go Mid Sussex Marathon weekend. The other two races are the East Grinstead 10 Mile on Saturday May 5th 2012 and the Burgess Hill 10K on Monday May 7th 2012.

You can run them individually - or take part in all three. If you take part in all three and run 26.2 miles you will receive a specially designed Commemorative Go Mid Sussex Marathon Weekend Medal.

Team relay option with three people running approx. 3.3 miles each

Children's Race

Special weekend packages available to include accommodation and entertainment

All three races held under UKA Rules. Permits applied for.

The race uses an undulating trail and pathway course in and around Haywards Heath, using mainly traffic free routes. Would suit runners of all standards including those new to 10 mile races. Positions in this race count towards overall series prizes for those completing all 26.2 miles over the three races (first 100 male and female finishers in each race score points).

Please note that the race is considered unsuitable for wheelchair athletes. If you have any questions about the suitability of the course for you then please call the Go Mid Sussex Marathon Weekend Office on 01797 230999

Medals to all finishers plus finish line goodies - and there will be other events, attractions and entertainment throughout the weekend at all three races.



Barns Green Half Marathon

The pre-race favourite was always James, and he stormed off at the start. Jim Graham has been concentrating on his running and he also started very strongly. I am not noted for fast starts but went through the first mile in 6m23s, but James and Jim were already way out of sight, probably well under 6 minutes!! Soon after Phil Couch came cantering past looking very comfortable.

Colin went out fairly quickly, and was followed by Mark and Rachel who were being paced by Rob, who was barely at a jogging pace by his standards, whilst making Rachel and Mark run at their limit!

With Barns Green it is always the second half of the race that sorts everyone out as somehow it seems to be predominantly uphill, especially after 9 miles. By the half way mark though we already had two casualties. Clare had to pull out with cramp, which was very disappointing for her, and Emma stopped halfway. Her 6-month taper for this race had left her severely undertrained!

By 9 miles James had run into trouble. He was on course for a 1h23m finish when he developed severe stomach cramps. He gamely carried on, running and walking to still finish just outside 1h33m. Meanwhile Jim Graham kept up his excellent pace to be first home in 1.26.19. Phil could just see him at times but could not close the gap to finish in 1.27.12. Steve was delighted to run a very even race in 1.28.18.

Once Mark had got his breathing together he managed to push on to finish 14 seconds ahead of Rachel and Rob, but not before all three had caught and passed Colin late on. He wasn't wearing club kit and it was only the muttered expletives that made them realise they had overtaken him!  Rachel broke her PB by some 4 minutes so had a cracking run. John Liebers ran in place of Steve Mac (apparently worried that 14 pints of lager the night before might have an adverse effect) and did a time Steve would have been proud of - just outside 1h46m and a few minutes ahead of Del who did a respectable 1h52m.

Lucy had an excellent run to finish second lady in 1.46.30, and Kay planned and executed a very steady even race in 2h10m and Julie did an excellent 2.08.56 (?PB). I didn't even see Sharon in the melee afterward but she was third lady from the club just outside 2h6m. Julienne finished in 2h34m.

No race would be complete without the support crew so thanks to Steve Mac (and Murphy), Hazel and Pete for their consistent cheering.

MEN WINNER 1.10.30

Jim Graham   1.26.19  22.43%  10points
Phil Couch     1.27.12   23.69      9
Steve Alden   1.28.18   25.25      8
James Dear   1.33.19   32.35      7
Mark Jordan  1.41.00   43.26      6
Rob Hoodless 1.41.13  43.56      5
Colin Chambers 1.43.25 46.68    4
John Liebers   1.46.07  50.51      3
Del Hastings   1.52.33  59.64      2


Rachel Baker      1.41.14  22.33% 10points
Lucy Williams     1.46.30  28.70      9
Sharon Chladek  2.06.07  52.40      8
Kay McMenamin 2.10.18  57.46      7
Julie Williams     2.08.56  55.81      6
Julienne Stuart-Colwill 2.34.20 86.5  5
Emma Alden       DNF (6miles)         4
Clare Parkinson   DNF (cramp)         3


Author: Steve Alden

Abingdon Marathon

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I thoroughly recommend this race, which is well organised and has less than 800 runners (so not enough people to get in the way). Well marshalled plus decent medal and a technical shirt in the goodie-bag. 

Vibram Five-Fingers in training allowed Asics Piranha SP3 shoes to be used for the marathon. The Piranha's weigh 140g each (half the weight of normal marathon shoes) and are considered best for distances up to 5k. By running on the balls of feet there is no need for the heel cushioning but it does stress the calf muscles.

Abingdon Ranked Top in UK For PBs in 2010 Runners World Poll.

This is the first marathon I have ever done "with negative splits". 1:36 out and 1:34 back. Wonderful feeling finishing strongly and being able to sprint the last few hundred metres in an Athletics Stadium to the finish line. All my previous marathon efforts have ended in wall-hit near-death experiences as I crawl over the finish line, having slowed dramatically over the last few miles. Pleasant 10 degrees weather helped.

by Jim Graham

Brighton Marina Triathlon

I won't bore you with details of my "extremely long" journey from South Chailey to Brighton as it was uneventfull and by 06.15 i was parked right opposite the start point.The weather was good the sky looked pretty clear and the sun would soon be out. I spent the next hour setting up my gear in transition and chatting to other competitors. I even found myself giving advise to a very nervous guy about the swim leg! Yes ME giving advise about swimming!!! Well actually it was more about trying to reassure him to try to alleviate his nerves!!

I still find it hard to believe that i have reached a point in my triathlon career where the swim leg no longer presents a mental problem, i just wish i could move quicker through the water, then i will really have cracked it!!!

There were two "waves", the first, all males under 40yrs, the second, all males over 40yrs and all the females. The 1000m swim leg takes place in the Inner Marina, so the water is brackish and fairly still. At least i didn't have to fight the waves and the wind like in Wales!!! As i got into the water my nose clip broke, which in the past would have really "pissed" me off because without a nose clip i suffer after a swim with a severely congested nose, but being a real triathlete i ignored the issue!!! as soon as the hooter sounded i was off and into my rhythm albeit a slow one!! The swim went without any problems and the next thing i am climbing the ladder, yes climbing a ladder, to get out of the water, then it is a 200m run through the Marina shopping precinct on pavement and road back to T1.

No problems this time in getting my wet suit off and i was soon off on the two lap 32K bike course which takes you out of the Marina heading towards the roundabout at St. Dunstans where the route then goes up through Ovingdean and continues to climb up to Woodingdean. After climbing the short but steep ramp at the lights it then heads towards the race course where it turns left and down Wilson Avenue,[over 40mph down here but you have to careful at the bottom that you slow in time for left turn at the lights] then behind the golf course for the start of the second lap. By now although it was a bit cloudy the sun was warming up. During the two bike laps i managed to overtake a number of other riders so by the time i reached T2 i had made up some of the time i always lose on the swim.

No problems in T2 and then it was an 8K out and back run along the underpass towards Rottingdean. the sun was quite warm now but there was a nice breeze coming off the sea.On the way out i overtook a few runners and the return leg i even managed to up my pace and passed a couple more before "sprinting" to the finish line. Although by now my nose was pretty blocked up i enjoyed my last triathlon of this season.
SWIM: 1000 m   26 mins 25 sec
T1                    4 mins
BIKE: 32 K         1 hr.7 mins 24 sec
T2                    2 mins
RUN:8 K            38 mins 6 sec
OVERALL TIME:  2 hrs 17 mins 55 sec      [ beat last years time by 5 mins 5 sec ]
OVERALL POSITION: 88th  out of  134 
Sorry no photos yet!!!

Author: Del