Stage 3 of the Welsh Triathlon Super Series
Sunday 5th of September saw an amazing turn out for the third stage of the Welsh Triathlon Super Series at Bala. With the early morning mist making way to glorious sunshine on Llyn Tegid, it was set to be an action-packed race, and it sure delivered on that promise. Having delivered the event in 2018 and 2019 to safeguard the location, the event now lay in the hands of Clwb Beicio Bala, and along with Tough Runner UK, successfully delivered an excellent event race in a beautiful location. We saw some incredible racing from first time novices all the way to the more seasoned return triathletes.
As the waves made their way to the Swim Start, a minute’s applause was given by all present in support of Nathan Ford, who’d be seriously hurt in an accident a fortnight earlier. As the swim began on a calm Llyn Tegid, it was Olly Simon and Matt Grantham who led the way, with times a little under 22minutes. Within the female race, it was also neck and neck between Kate Curran and GOG’s Rhian Roxburgh, as Curran exited the water 7 seconds ahead in a time of 22:57.
As the waves entered, the scene of the Aran reflecting on Tegid’s waters, with the sun shining on all the participants was a sight to behold. As Simon and Grantham, joined by the leading ladies and Michael Shackloth, Dan Elliot and Stephen Rowlands made their way along the closed road bike course, a flurry of activity transcended upon Transition as the masses then began to leave the water. As they fought to get out of their wetsuits and hit the road, Simon was building a lead on the bike leg, and although only being 30 seconds behind on the bike split, a 4minute lead of Paul Skipper was enough to ensure there was breathing space for the rest of the race.
Elsewhere across the series contenders, George Comins produced an impressive bike split of 56.12, whilst Jon Seymour, Gareth Bowyer and Matthew Davies also cut the sub 1 hour time. The female race again saw Curran and Roxburgh inseparable as they returned from the bike. Both were a clear 6minutes ahead of the rest of the female field, as Emma Jane Bradfield, Rebecca Comins, Emma Palfrey, Catherine Marks, Mared Dafydd and Eleanor Davies all posted sub-1.10times.
As the mid-day heat started to increase and make conditions difficult on the flat run course, our finishers were making their way back to the lakeside. ATAC’s Olly Simon cruised through the run to cross in first position, adding to his second-place finish at the opening stage at Broadhaven. Simon was followed by Dan Elliot in second and Paul Skipper in third.
Within the female race, having been side by side throughout, Curran kicked away during the return of the run, putting six minutes into Roxburgh as the race came to the close. She crossed the line first, Roxburgh in second, followed by Sarah Harrison in third.
Across the categories, there were strong performances by Emer Sandham (GOG) and Sara Morgans (TET) in the female veteran category. Dragon Tri’s Rebecca Comins topped the Female Vintage Vet category, contested as always by Jen Aylward, Elizabeth Williams and Gail Osbourne; whilst North Dock’s Barbera Cook took the female super veteran category ahead of GOGs Liz McIndoe. Caitlin Owen, another GOG representative bagged full points in the female junior category, which contributed to their team score of 470 for the stage.
Within the male categories, consistent performances from Matthew Davies see’s him not only top the male veteran category, but also the overall category, having secured top 5 finishes in each race so far. Within the veteran’s category, he’s closely followed by Stephen Rowlands of Carmarthen Triathlon Club and GOGs Jon Seymour. The vintage veteran race was another victory for Gareth Bowyer, who after three stages has bagged full points and cannot be caught. A Sub 2:30 time for Justin Bailey of Team Watt see’s him climb to third in the category overall. Taff Ely’s Ed Morgan took the tape in the super veteran category and has leapfrogged Pencoed’s Simon Morgan to the top of that category, whilst David Hill completed another victory in the male SV Vet category. James Harries also bagged another win in the male junior, finishing within the overall top 10 and cementing his victory at the Standard distance champs last time out.
The next stage of the Super Series sees us return North, to Newborough beach. A stage that usually brings our series to a close is the penultimate stage for 2021, as the final stage heads south to Barry. This stage will also be one of the sprint races for Tim tri Cymru representation, with those on their respective podiums being offered the opportunity to compete at the 2022 British Sprint Champs.
For a full breakdown of the Stage 3 results, click here.
For an up-to-date Super Series breakdown, click here.