FIVE juniors from Stratford Triathlon Club took on the incredibly difficult course of the Sandwell Triathlon on Sunday.
It took place around the beautiful Swan Pool Lake at Sandwell Valley and comprised of an open water swim in the lake followed by a bike section on closed roads before finishing with a run along the path around the lake.
The open water swim was a challenge for everyone as most competitors had never competed in a lake before and several really did struggle to come to terms with this.
The bike course was also extremely challenging starting with a steep incline before turning for a very fast and technical downhill stretch that really tested the athletes.
First up for Stratford was Ben Jones in the Tri Star 3 category (300m swim, 6,000m bike, 2,400m run) and he continued his fine form of late to finish in third place in the boys’ race and pick up another trophy.
Ben picked up valuable points in the West Midlands Series from this race and will be looking to continue his form in the final two races of the series.
Next up for Stratford were the Tri Star 2 girls (200m swim, 4,000m bike, 1,800m run) and Stratford were represented by Lucy Sainsbury (13th) and Charlotte Marshall (seventh). Both girls put in really good performances and should be pleased with their times.
In the Tri Star 1 girls’ race (150m swim, 2,000m bike, 1,200m run) Stratford were represented by Molly Bullock, who maintained her incredible form to finish in a fabulous second place.
This result follows three successive victories in the West Midlands Series and Molly must now have her eye on the series title with just two races remaining.
The final competitor for Stratford was Juliette Marshall in the Tri Star Start category (50m swim, 1,000m bike, 600m run) and, despite suffering a fall from the bike and a mechanical malfunction on the bike when her chain slipped off, she managed to finish the race in a fantastic third place.
Juliette really showed immense grit and determination in this race, which summed up the fighting spirit of all of the Stratford juniors.