FIVE Stratford Triathlon Club members competed in Sunday’s round three of the club’s Grand Prix Tri Series which comprises 15 rounds of varying distance events, writes Dave Clarkson.
Fortunately the weather gods were on their side and the sun shone for the Bicester event. Starting with a 400 metres pool swim followed by 20km bike section and 5km run, STC’s Rachel Pearce dominated the ladies’ field by setting a very fast swim time followed by a blistering bike leg and topped off with a strong run.
She came home first womea whilst also winning her age group in the 45-49 category. Pearce now tops the GP leaderboard with 26 points.
Meanwhile, Brian Weetman, Paul Nash and Dave Clarkson were battling it out in the veterans 50+ section.
Weetman and Clarkson started together with only a few seconds between them exiting the water and there was nothing to separate them until Weetman got a gap on the bike as Clarkson struggled with his shoes.
Then, at 5km, Clarkson went into the lead and held this until T2 where they both exited on to the run together. They stayed together for the first 1.5km until Weetman opened a gap and led to the finish.
All the time both competitors knew Nash was chasing them down and, after a fantastic bike leg, Nash could see he was gaining on Clarkson but losing time to Weetman.
Nash managed to close the gap enough to give him third place, 16 seconds ahead of Clarkson.
Whilst all this was going on, Richard Eden, first off in an earlier wave, managed to put together three great times to finish third in his 65-69 age group.
Results (sprint – 400m swim, 20km bike, 5km run): Rachel Pearce – swim 7:46, T1 1:37, bike 37:43, T2 1:10, run 21:46 – total 1:10:02, 1st lady, 1st in cat; Brian Weetman – swim 8:29, T1 1:28, bike 40:56, T2 0:54, run 25:40 – total 1:17:27, 56th overall, 3rd in cat; Paul Nash – swim 8:52, T1 3:02, bike 38:33, T2 1:02, run 27:38 – total 1:19.07, 62nd overall, 2nd in cat; Dave Clarkson – swim 8:32, T1 1:25, bike 40:48, T2 1:16, run 27:42 – total 1:19:23, 65th overall, 6th in cat; Richard Eden – swim 10:53, T1 2:46, bike 48:13, T2 3:00, run 31:26 – total 1:36:18, 132nd, 3rd in cat.