Windsor and Eton Winter Duathlon Attended by Dame Kelly Holmes
The duathlon was Dame Kelly’s first competitive race since her 2005 retirement from British athletics and she’s committed to all three of the remaining races in the Windsor & Eton Winter Series.
She said of the day, “I haven’t done any events for absolutely years. Everyone’s really nice. It’s great to see a mix of people out today, not just the pros but people who enjoy taking part. Unfortunately, I had a puncture on my fourth cycle lap – my background is running, I’ve never done any cycling before so I definitely need to work on that – but I will be here at the next one in February. My mission is to get all the way around the cycle track without a puncture next time!”
The event featured three distance races. First place in the men’s Super-Sprint went to Alex Yee (Crystal Palace Triathletes) with a finishing time of 00:33:18. Oliver Riley (Thames Valley Triathletes) came second with a time of 00:37:57 while third place went to Wayne Clements (TRI20) crossing the line in 00:39:12. In the women’s race Emily Reeves (Hillingdon Triathletes) nabbed the top podium position, finishing in 00:39:36, five minutes ahead of Lisa Sammons who came second with a time of 00:44:36 while Caroline Dunnett took third place in 00:44:42.
Gillian Sanders took first place in the women’s Sprint race, finishing in 01:12:16, second place went to Kirsty Myles (One Triathlon RDS) finishing in 01:17:54, followed by Kirsty Prior crossing the line in 01:23:10.
All three podium placers in the men’s race finished in under 65mins. Hugh Mackenzie (Imperial College Triathlon) crossed the line first in 01:03:27 with Anthony Haynes only seconds behind, finishing at 01:03:54. Rory Atkins (Optima Racing Team) completed the podium, taking third in a time of 01:04:24.
The men’s Olympic race saw Karl Matthews come in first at 01:51:05, followed by George Eyles who finished in 02:02:03 and Barnaby Gray (Farnham Triathlon Club) in 02:05:53. In the women’s race, first place went to Antonia Moss who crossed the line in 02:26:24, Sally Waterman (TRI20) took second with a time of 02:35:13 and Hanna Schmitt rounded off the podium in 03:19:01.
Other competitors included competitive wheelchair athlete, Daniel Cook, 18, from Dorset. Cook, who is a member of Synergie Coaching, aims to take part in the British Elite Duathlon Championships in Corby, Northamptonshire in March. “I normally do triathlons, so this was a warm up for my next triathlon race,” he said, “I came all the way up because Dorney Lake is a great track and it’s a great venue.”
The day was also a great opportunity for first-timers challenging themselves to a new discipline.
James Richardson, 26, and running mate Heidi Marks, 27, came down from London for their first Duathlon, completing the Sprint Distance in just over one and a half hours. Heidi said: “We did better than I thought we would. It was our first Duathlon. We do run but this was a new challenge, you could call it a New Year challenge.”
A group of five friends in their 30s and 40s from Marlow roped each other in for the Sprint Distance and were all smiles after making it to the finish line. Erica Brennan said: “It was awesome. It was a beautiful day for it although a bit chilly at the start. Five of us girls came down today. One of the girls came up with the idea and we all just followed for the challenge. It was well organised, we’ll definitely be coming back.”
The next three races in the series all have spaces available and will take place on 22 February, 23 March and 19 April. For more information or to enter, visit www.f3events.co.uk/general/duathlon.