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Buckingham, Pallant take Windsor victory
Posted by: Editor
Posted on: Sunday 15th June 2014


Tags  David Bishop  |  Emma Pallant  |  Jenny Manners  |  Lucy Smith  |  Mark Buckingham  |  Windsor  |  Windsor Triathlon


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Pallant and Buckingham run to victory at the 2014 Triathlonguard Windsor Triathlon

Entries now open for the 25th Windsor Triathlon in 2015

The quiet and picturesque town of Windsor was transformed into a hive of excitement, adrenaline and entertainment this weekend as it welcomed the 24th annual Triathlonguard Windsor Triathlon.

A record number of over 3,200 budding triathletes had signed up to enter this year’s race, once again selling-out months in advance, with amateur athletes through to elite competitors excited to be part of the UK’s most decorated triathlon event and perhaps see themselves on TV with the event being televised by Channel 4.

2014 saw another record set for the event, with the largest line-up of elite athletes the event has hosted in its history, featuring both regulars to the circuit such as Richard Stannard and Stuart Hayes alongside a fresh crop of exciting young talent who have recently been making names for themselves including Emma Pallant.

With all the competitors having racked their bikes and gained a feel for the transition area and event village on Saturday, it meant a smooth early arrival on Sunday morning. A few competitors were glad of the early start put in by Wiggle and blueseventy with some forgetting goggles, race belts and even bike shoes.... For most it was a seamless start with the first Sprint Triathlon waves setting off exactly on time at 6am. The Sprint comprised of a 750m swim, 30km bike and 5km run over both the male and female races.

A veteran of many a Windsor Triathlon, Mark Yeoman crossed the line as the fastest male at sprint distance very chuffed with his 1:20:13 time. Christopher Symonds was slower on both the swim and bike leg but tried his hardest to chase Yeoman down on the run leg. It was not to be and Symonds took second place in 1:22:31. Patrick Tierney was the third male finishing in 1:22:55. Over in the female race, it was the veterans again who took the honours with 45 year old Jane Hansom finishing seven minutes ahead of Karen Roake in 1:29:04. Roake of B2P Tri Club finished with a time of 1:36:07 followed by Victoria Emmet in third in 1:38:43

The Olympic distance event comprised of a 1500m swim, 42km bike and 10km run. This kicked off at 6.20am with the amateur athletes heading off first, building up to the highly anticipated Men’s and Women’s Elite races that were set up to be a spectacle to end the day.

It was James Hockin who came first with the only sub-2 hour amateur Olympic triathlon of the day with a very impressive 1:58:42. Paul Burton was in second place in 2:01:19 with Roger Barr taking third placed honours by smashing the run leg to cross the line in 2:01:39. Over in the female race Sophie Whitworth sealed her comeback from injury taking the win in an impressive 2:19:26, Katherine de Rome was second in 2:21:04 with Thea Gudgeon taking third place in 2:29:01.

Across the age groupers, the general consensus was that the swim was “brutal, with a tough swim against the flow around the island”.

By the time we were ready for the Elite races the streets of Windsor were well and truly packed full of spectators with many using the cowbells provided by Swiss Tourism to add to the atmosphere and increase the level of support for triathletes.

The Elite women were off first with Hannah Kitchen exiting the water in pole position with Kimberley Bell and Katie Synge hot on her tail. The Channel 4 film crew were poised on their motorbikes and sped out of transition with the female leaders in pursuit. Once on the bike, the field bunched up with Kitchen, Pallant and Lee all looking strong. However, out on the run course, Emma Pallant kicked hard and left everyone trailing, crossing the line over two minutes ahead of her rivals in 2:03:43. Jenny Manners couldn’t catch Pallant, but had a fantastic battle on the run leg with Lucy Smith to take second place honours in 2:05:51. Smith crossed the line just six seconds behind in 2:05:57.

The finale of the day was the Men’s Elite Wave which got off to a flying start with an extremely competitive swim leg in which Richard Stannard once again demonstrated his dominance in the water as he led the triathletes coming into transition.

Stannard was caught on the bike course by a pack including David Bishop, Mark Buckingham and junior athlete Rory Atkins, who showed great promise for the future. Coming into the run leg there was not much to choose between the top ten triathletes and it was always going to be the run that decided this race. Mark Buckingham exerted his dominance early, setting off very fast, making all those watching wonder if he could maintain the blistering pace. Buckingham did not disappoint as a storming 31:41 over the 10km ensured that he crossed the line first in 1:49:15. David Bishop did his best to stay with the pace but could only manage 31:58 on the run taking second place in 1:49:40. Welshman Iestyn Harrett came third in 1:50:42. Following the race, Buckingham was very pleased to have won having worked hard on his run in the last few months commenting “Windsor is such a good race in a really iconic venue”.

All finishers were rewarded with a medal and t-shirt, as well as Vita Coco and PowerBar as they crossed the line. Etched across their faces were the myriad of emotions that you experience on completing a triathlon -joy, elation, exhaustion, disappointment, pain and, of course, the great pride that comes from completing a triathlon.

In 2015, the Windsor Triathlon turns 25 and to celebrate the 25th Anniversary of the Windsor Triathlon entries for next year’s event are now open. A priority entry period is running for previous Windsor entrants and Human Race Club members until 9am on Wednesday when entries will open to the general public. Extremely high demand is anticipated so be quick to avoid disappointment.

To enter visit www.humanrace.co.uk/triathlon

This year’s Triathlonguard Windsor Triathlon will be broadcast on Channel 4 at 7-8am on Sunday 29th June (and C4+1 at 8am).


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