Hundreds of entrants battled monsoon-like conditions at the British University, College and Schools Sprint Championships last weekend, with Cardiff Metropolitan Uni students Sam Wade and Zoe Thomas eventually taking individual honours.
The morning’s racing started with glorious sunshine at St Mary’s Sports Centre in Calne, Wiltshire; unfortunately this proved to be the calm before the storm as 639 competitors took on the variable weather conditions from stormy to pure sunshine.
The triathletes who started early managed to escape the worst of the weather with only a few minor puddles to avoid. The triathletes who started later were not as lucky.
Proceedings were brought to a halt when the main thunderstorm hit and race officials made the decision to suspend the racing for 10 minutes. “The flashes of lighting and stair rod rain made the decision easy to stop the race for safety reasons until the storm had passed,” said race director Aaron Ward.
After a short break the racing was back underway as the triathletes took on the 750m pool based swim, 25km bike and 5km run. The weather improved as the elite triathletes took to the course but the road conditions being greasy made for fearless bike handling skills as the elites gambled on the wet and dry sections of the course setting them up for a fast flat 5km run.
As the racing came to a close, Samuel Wade of Cardiff Metropolitan Uni was the quickest across the line in a time of 01:05:18, nearly a minute ahead of Richard Horton 01:06:14 and Chris Perham 01:06:17, both of Loughborough Uni.
It proved to be a clean sweep for Cardiff Metropolitan Uni when Zoe Thomas took the women’s BUCS title in 01:11:43. In second place was Sophie Coldwell a Loughborough student in the world class performance squad at Loughborough with an overall time of 01:12:32 who lost time on the bike section to Zoe Thomas.
In third position was Chloe Cook from Leeds Beckett Uni (Carnegie) who had the fastest run split of the day in 18:23 and an overall time of 01:12:47. The fastest female swim split on the day was Kimberley Bell in 09:08. A triathlete to watch out for in the future from Birmingham Uni was Floren Scrafton with an overall position of 12th but with the third fastest female run split of the day with 18:49.
For full results head here.
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