The Melin Sospan Sizzler incorporating the 2018 Welsh Middle Distance Championships took place on it’s re-scheduled date of August 26th at Burry Port Harbour. The event had been postponed on July 29th due to the severe weather conditions forecasting winds on that day of 40mph. Forecasted weather predictions did give organisers Healthy Life Activities confidence that the swim element could take place as the heavy winds were due to come in from 8am onwards. Following a Swim safety meeting between the race organsier, RNLI Burry Port and the water safety crew of the Amman Valley Paddlers the decision was taken by Noelwyn Daniel that the swim would go ahead but on a slightly shorter two lap 750m course.
The Melin Sospan Sizzler got underway at 6:45am with a reduced field of 70 athletes compared to the 240 originally entered for July 29th. The leading individual athlete out of the water was Emily McLoughlin in a time of 28:46. A lead of nearly 2 minutes over her closest rival Rebecca Bennett and she was only a few seconds behind the overall Race Leader after the swim in Teifi Drew.
The rough sea conditions had left a few of the less experienced athletes shell shocked as they exited the swim up the slipway and towards transition. The day was going to get much tougher however as the wind picked up significantly with heavy rain adding to the severe conditions and with over 3000ft of climbing this was never an easy bike course in any conditions. Experienced triathletes commented that this was by far the hardest and worst conditions they had ever cycled in – not a race for the faint hearted! A very strong bike leg by Jonathan Phillips moved him up to 2nd overall position and lead Male athlete with Teifi Drew loosing nearly 4 minutes to him on the bike leg. Emily and Rebecca posted very similar bike splits meaning there was little to choose between both as they headed out onto the 21km run section along the Millennium Coastal path. Emily McLoughlin remained as the lead athlete out on the course and stormed to Overall victory with a 1hr 30 half marathon split time giving her a 10 minute lead over 2nd female athlete Rebecca Bennet in a time of 5:04:02 with the Overall Male Winner Jonathan Philips coming in 3 minutes behind her with a time of 5:07:26.
Welsh Triathlon Would like to thank Noelwyn and the crew at Healthy Life Activities for facilitating another quality event in testing conditions.
|Female Senior||Gold||Emily McLoughlin||5:04:02|
|Male Senior||Gold||Jonathan Phillips||5:07:26|
|Female 40-49||Gold||Helen Colley||7:12:06|
|Male 40-49||Gold||Simon Malley||6:09:38|
|Male 50-59||Gold||Nigel Morse||6:07:08|
A full breakdown of the results can be found here: