Matt Thompson and Karen Smith took overall male and female honours today, Sunday 24th September, at the Tokio Millenium Re. Triathlon.
It was 15 year old Nick Pilgrim who led the senior individual field out of the Hamilton Harbour 750m swim with a time of 10 mins 57 secs with Matt over two minutes back in 12 min 57 secs. On the 20km bike however, Matt gradually closed the gap on the talented junior as he recorded a time of 34 min 01 secs against Nick’s time of 35:52. Going into the 5km run only a handful of seconds separated them. Meanwhile Alan Potts, who had alot of time to make up after a 15 min 11 sec swim, posted a very fast 33 min 07 secs bike to put himself in contention for the win.
Matt took the lead early on the run and slowly distanced himself from Nick but with Alan having a strong run the race for top honours was still in the balance. In the end though Alan ran out of real estate as Matt, who finished 3rd last year, recorded a 20 min 30 secs run to win in 1 hr 08 mins 27 secs with Alan 30 secs back in 1:08:57 after a 19 min 57 secs run. Junior Nick held on for an impressive 3rd place finish with a 22 mins 16 secs run for an overall time of 1:09:42.
Karen Smith was never really challenged for overall female honours as she once again took top spot amongst the women and 4th place overall in 1hr 10 min 41 secs. Karen completed the swim in 12 min 25 secs with just a 30 secs gap over impressive newcomers Michelle Pearson ( 12:55) and Maddie Durkin (12:54). Karen soon used her superior bike strength to open up the gap on Michelle with Maddie unable to hold the pace. Karen completed the bike in 36:25 to extend her lead over Michelle ( 37:46) to over 2 minutes. Maddie completed the bike in 40:25 to come in three minutes adrift of Michelle.
Karen then posted a strong run split of 21 min 06 secs, crossing the line with a comfortable lead. Michelle posted a 24:04 run to finish 2nd and a strong 9th overall in 1:16:14 . Maddie’s run time of 25:15 gave her an overall time of 1:20:00 for 3rd place amongst the women and 16th overall.
There were 47 starters in the individual event.
Much of the attention focused on the team event where world champion Flora Duffy, teamed up with two of Bermuda’s leading age group triathletes, Ashley Estwanik (last year’s individual female champion) and Martina Olcheski – Bell (the 2015 female champion). Flora’s 9:58 swim gave her team a healthy overall lead and Ashley wasted no time in extending that lead with a quick 34 :58 bike. Martina, with a run time of 20:40, then ensured that the team posted the fastest overall time of the day of 1hr 6 min 20 secs.
The Male Team category was won appropriately by the Tokio team of Nick Taylor, Dave McComas and Sean Kelly in 1:08:19 . Pete Crayford, Mike Parrish and Virgine Salzard took overall mixed honours.
Earlier in the day Meghan Diel was first across the line in 31 mins 12 secs in the shorter Tri – a -Tri event to take top female honours with Chris DeSilva, second overall, the top male finisher in 33:07.