2017 Nuffield Health Eton SuperSprint Saturday Race Report
22nd May 2017
Over 800 competitors arrived under brilliant sunshine and blue skies on the first day of racing at the Nuffield Health Eton Sprints Weekend on Saturday 20 May 2017. A popular sold-out weekend this year, the day saw the official start of the Human Race triathlon season at Dorney Lake, with a full calendar of events lined up throughout the summer.
After being treated to a protein breakfast from FUEL10K, first into the water were the SuperSprint Mates Waves, where triathletes can race outside of their age category and compete against friends and family of all ages. Whilst for some this meant a relaxed first foray into triathlon, there were others looking to beat personal bests, and first across the finish line was Tom Arnold in 1:07:23. His fantastic swim time led him to take 4th place in the overall SuperSprint male rankings from the day.
Coming in first place in the SuperSprint male wave was Matthew Blagg in 1:01:14, who overtook Chris Symonds (Enfield and Haringey Triathlon Club) on the final run, leaving Chris to cross the line a close second in 1:01:49. Third place went to Dan Phillips in 1:03:42, whose swim time saw him emerge from the lake in first place, only to be beaten to the title on a competitive and fast-paced bike section.
In the female SuperSprint race, Tri London athlete Jade Wright took the win in 1:11:05. Second place Arianna Alonso Bizzi swam the fastest, but was overtaken on the bike course by Jade and third place Alice Maclennan, only to finish strongly on the run and claim back the second step on the podium. Her finishing time was 1:15:18, with Alice in 1:18:59.
The second half of the morning saw the Sprint triathletes take to the water, with another two packed Mates Waves taking to the course, many raising their hands at the start line when asked if this was their first triathlon. The nerves didn’t show however, with everyone blasting round the course and many coming over the line hand in hand with friends, with huge smiles on their faces. Congratulations to everyone who took on their first multi-sport event this weekend!
The Sprint female wave saw athletes of all ages racing, with Karen Fenner in the 50-54 age category winning in 1:14:51 and proving that age is just a number. She was in 16th place after the swim, but speeded through transition, gaining 11 places and was leading the ladies by the end of the bike course. Second place Rebecca Pritchard (Tri-Force), was first out of the lake after the swim and only slipped down to second place after the four laps on the bike, finishing in 1:16:14. Third place went to Elizabeth Mayon-White of Andover Triathlon Club who finished in 1:18:38, having moved up from 13th place after the initial swim.
The Sprint male category was split into two waves – 41+ the U41 athletes – both culminating in some fantastic performances. In the 41+ wave, Karol Szor emerged from the water in 49th place, but with an exceptionally fast transition and bike time he finished third in 1:11:24. Second place Fergus Graham completed the course in 1:10:42, whilst Steve Fell took the top spot in 1:08:58, again gaining ground on his competitors on the bike course.
In the final wave of the day, the Sprint male U41s was won by Patrick Tierney (Ful-On Tri) who finished the 750m swim, 21.2km bike and 5km run in an impressive 1:04:44. Second place went to Xavier Salaun, who after finishing the swim in 20th place, moved up the field to complete in a time of 1:09:08. Manuel Fernandez had the fastest swim of the wave, and eventually came in third overall in 1:10:43.
The day of racing was full of action, personal bests and great achievements, which we can’t do justice to in this small summary of the day. You can see all the results on the Human Race website here.
Nutrition partner Science in Sport were on hand to offer energy gels at registration, as well as providing the fuel station on the course and a REGO Rapid Recovery sachet at the finish line. Upon claiming their medal, participants could also reward themselves with isotonic drink ERDINGER Alkoholfrei, and many groups stayed to cheer friends over the finish line and toast their sporting efforts. In the race village, Nuffield Health were offering post-race massages and 10% off gym memberships to all attendees, as well as competitions taking place from cycle insurance specialist Yellow Jersey and Enertor insoles, which involved taking a finish line selfie with (cardboard) Usain Bolt.
Next up in the Human Race triathlon calendar is the historic Nuffield Health Royal Windsor Triathlon on Sunday 18th June. There are still a few weeks left to enter; find out more on the event page.