A QUARTET of Stratford Triathlon Club members made an impressive start to the season with a clean sweep of top ten age group finishes at the Tewkesbury Aquathlon.
This was the first race in the club’s 2017 Grand Prix series and comprised a 400m pool swim with a 5km run to finish.
The consensus on the day was ‘it was very cold’ but this may well have been a bit of an understatement with temperatures at or around freezing.
In his first Grand Prix event, Martin Helliker, first home for the club, said: “I forgot my watch and my change of clothes – very amateur! It was very cold and wet in the transition area so I moved on to poolside where it was positively tropical!
“It was very warm water in the pool too, I didn’t manage to get into any sort of rhythm but I did manage to count my 20 lengths accurately!
“I spent a full two minutes dressing for the Arctic in transition and was pretty glad I did as it made the run a lot more ‘enjoyable’. I ran away from the shelter of the school buildings and on to the field for four cold, wet and muddy laps.
“I felt slightly overdressed in my track pants, T-shirt, jumper, hat and gloves but I’m not too sure I would have made it in just a tri-suit! It was one of those days where anything exposed stings a little!”
It was a great start for Martyn with a top ten finish on the day and third in his age group.
Seanin Gilmore was next home for the club in 12th place overall and also third in her age group in an almost identical swim time to Martyn, who just managed to edge it on the run, beating her by just 21 seconds.
A Brownlee-style battle between the two of them could ensue throughout the season.
Next home for STC was club stalwart Caroline Gionis who claims she had a “reasonable swim but a pretty decent run”.
A 30th placed overall finish and seventh in her age group represented a very decent start to the season.
Last home for the club, but by no means least, was Paul Nash with ninth place in his age group which rounded off a successful, if somewhat chilly, start to the season.
Report courtesy of Victoria Jeffs.
Results: Martyn Helliker – swim 7:31, run 21:26 – total 28:58; Seanin Gilmore – swim 7:30, run 21:49 – total 29:19; Caroline Gionis – swim 8:48, run 27:43 – total 36:31; Paul Nash – swim 7:38, run 29:16 – total 36:53.