Club News

Feb 18, 2012

Cerist Champion

Ifan Richards race report from The Fearless Mtb Duathlon which involved a 8k trail run, 19k Mtb, 6k trail run.

Having sat out my usual discipline of Fell racing on Saturday (Taren Hendre fell race) I headed to Coed Llandegla Mtb complex nr Wrexham on the Sunday for my first duathlon of the year, The Fearless Mtb Duathlon which involved a 8k trail run, 19k Mtb, 6k trail run.

A full field of 200 athletes had entered and the few weeks prior I was keeping a keen eye on the website to check out the entries, names and the teams they raced for. Sure enough there were some top names entered and two GB team Duathletes!!! Plus many Triathletes from big clubs such as Liverpool Tri, Manchester Tri and so on. So I knew that it was going to be punishing from the off.

Es and myself arrived in good time and was very impressed with the set-up of the event, loads of team gazebos, banners and flags and it all looked proper job.

I got changed and took my stuff in to transition and set up the bike and shoes etc then started to run through my transition in my head. I went for a warm up run as I hate hanging about the start area as nerves kick in with looking at the opposition.

We were all called up to the start for the brief and we all lined up. I felt like a midget, surrounded by 6'.0" to 6'.4" skinny athletes that looked the biz!!

The gun went for the first 8k run the pace was frantic off the line and I told myself to hang back as the first 2 mile was uphill to stretch the field out. After the first mile I was about 18th but sure enough the front runners were tiring and slowly I was passing them and by the 2 mile marker and the top of the ascent I had caught the leading group of 8. What followed was a crazy descent through the forest with rocks, roots and fallen branches to hurdle over. I couldn't believe how this terrain slowed the 8 to a virtual standstill!!!! I saw my chance and put my fell running to full use I passed every one of them and opened up a healthy gap by the bottom. The next 2.5 mile was a mix of forest roads and footpaths in to T1. I arrived there with a 57sec lead and run time of 28:05. A quick transition and I was out on the bike.

The bike section was a complete lap of the technical red graded Mtb route (11mile). The course was made of long fire road climbs and very technical singletracks made tougher by ice on course. I've been training to improve my bike so I was very pleased to of held my lead on the bike, though I wasn't the quickest but not that much slower than the 2nd place athlete Nikalas Cook of 220Tri/Powerbar. I got in to T2 with a 12sec lead and ride time of 50:01.

With only a 12 sec lead out of T2 I knew I had work to do, and the 2nd run was going to be tough because I got really cold on the bike and felt my body going numb. However I opened the gap on the second run and my pace off the bike was good, on the forest road sections I was hitting out 5.30 miling and a quick glance to see where Nikalas was I was happy to see he wasn’t there so I pushed hard to the finish to take the win in a time of 01:34:52 and second run of 16:46.

Very happy to win this duathlon with the quality field and very proud to receive my trophy and hearing Cerist Tri named on the podium top spot ahead of sponsored team athletes.

Next Duathlon for me will be the Oulton Park Duathlon 8.5k, 40k, 4.3k on the 25th of March which will be an ITU world champ’s age group qualifying race.

Many thanks to Es for her support on the day.

Big thanks to Kev for his training and advice on tap and to Cerist as a club.

Diolch yn Fawr.