End of Year Racing Round Up

Lewis Bruce December 31, 2017 Comments Off on End of Year Racing Round Up
End of Year Racing Round Up

A final round up of the 2017 season right through from sunshine racing to the winter series

Alford Novice Triathlon

A throwback to blue skies & race day. A great representation from our M3 ladies taking part in the novice triathlon up in Alford. Great results as always and looking forward to seeing more from you all next year!

Name Time Category Cat. Position
47 Valerie Hopkins 1:07:13 Senior Female  8
51 Kirsty Stewart 1:11:07 Junior/Youth Female 1
59 Nicola Stewart 1:23:19 Vet Female 7
62 Angela Millar 1:26:15 Super Vet Female 2
64 Amanda Thompson 1:34:32 Vet Female 9

Ironman Weymouth 70.3

Expand for Race Report courtesy of Kevin Walton

I booked Weymouth 70.3 back in February 2017 without any Triathlon experience. I figured I’d better buy a bike. I joined M3 at that point and my training began. Through the year leading up to Weymouth I took part in the Monikie Sprint, the Dundee Half dram and the Great Scottish Swim along with my training i was getting from my coach Kenny.

With working offshore and the training variations between high volume at home to high intensity offshore I traveled down to Weymouth on Friday September 15th a little anxious whether I was ready for it. After a 10 hour drive down there which to be honest was the worst part of the weekend we arrived into Weymouth just before registration closed on the esplanade. Walking back through the expo tent with my bag, my wrist band attached it all became pretty real. Heading to the hotel we stopped at the beach for a little temperature check which felt perfect with the water looking like glass. We booked into the Riviera Hotel right at the end of the Esplanade. Little like butlins on arrival but ended up being a nice enough hotel for your weekend. Up bright and early on Saturday. Wet suit on and walked less than a minute from hotel room into the Sea. Spent a bit of time on there. The rest of the afternoon was a small bike a small run then down to the start line to get the head ready. Got my bike and gear ready into transition which at that point I all of sudden needed a toilet.

Race day:

Up dark and early at 4am. Ate as much porridge a possible then headed down to transition area to get my nutrition on my bike. Standing on the starting carpet was a bit daunting. After the first amateurs entered the water there were 2 pulled back in the boat the first 100m so that was worrying as these lads were the stronger swimmers. That worried me a little. I was standing at the 40 minute marker as that what was aiming for. 4 racers set off on the beep every 6 seconds. Water looked pretty choppy and the furthest away market looked miles away. Eventually I was up, nerves kicked in and I was needing a pea. I figured I’d get one in the water. My beep went so a small run and into the water and I was off. All my training for this.

Once I was in I was straight into a comfortable rhythm and felt good going out and the right turn heading to shore which I when it got a bit nasty. Few mouth fulls of water and high waves made it laboring but got out the water on 44 minutes. My first transition was terrible and took about 11 minutes. But was on the bike so felt comfortable once I’d dried off. Quite a hilly bike run but was enjoyable and fairly fast till mile 40 which I already new and checked on google maps. The longest steepest most unwanted Hill was there. Absolutely brutal to be honest but couldn’t complain as I’d enjoyed the rest. Cam off the bike in just over 3.30 which I’d been aiming for. Again my transition was rubbish in just under 5 minutes and at that point I’d got my pea over 4 hours later. The run along the esplanade was very supportive with the spectators with the beautiful weather. I ran at my race pace till about 17k then the legs were heavy. A few shouts from the crowd directed at me got me going till the finish. Completed in 6.36 which I was happy with. Greet year, great day and the most perfect location. Roll on Barcelona 2018.

A huge congratulations to all 3 members, especially those stepping up to this distance for the first time!

position Name Time Category Cat. Position
1320 Kevin Walton 6:36:53 M40-44 212
1364 Phil Blady 6:41:04 M45-49 197
1792 George Anderson 7:36:32 M45-49 250


Balfron Aquathlon

M3s busiest racer at it again as Chris Mocci raced both the Balfrom Aquathlon & the Galashiels junior triathlon, with a particularly good result at Galashiels thanks to a rapid bike split. Congrats to Chris for fantastic racing throughout the year which saw him win the inaugural M3 Male Youth Triathlete of the year

Name Time Category Cat. Position
Chris Mocci 10:48 Male 9-10 15

Borders Triathletes Junior Triathlon

Position Name Time Category Cat. Position
10 Chris Mocci 21:57 Male 9-10 7

Challenge Almere – Age Group Long Distance championships

Expand for Report courtesy of Mark Hopkins

John, Rory and I applied to race Challenge Almere representing Team GB after qualifying in our age groups at Ironman Barcelona in 2016.  Challenge Almere doubled as the 2017 ETU Long Course Championships and was advertised as a flat race that could be extremely windy.  Having trained all over Tayside and Fife I think we assumed that the wind couldn’t be that bad…..yeah right

Leading up to the race the weather was fantastic in Almere but suddenly the forecast took a shift and storms started to roll in the day before the race.  The roads and paths were covered in standing water, the lake was getting choppy and everything look grey, dull and awful plus the temperature had dropped which was going to make for an interesting bike.  A complete contrast to Callela 11 months ago.

The swim was a mass start, we all stepped off the platform into surprisingly warm water and swam over to the start corral, lots of different languages being spoken where I can only assume people were wishing each other good luck or they might have been trading recipes for all i know…..then the horn blasted and off we went on our two laps of the swim course.  Some weeds, a kick or two and a slap in the head made the swim a little more exciting that normal.  Then it was into a congested indoor changing area where nudity appeared to be de rigeur before heading to the bike having decided to tough it out without a gilet.

the bike leg required a technical 10km ride out from T1 to the edge of town  before joining the main loop.  You would do this loop twice so if there was any part of it you hated on the first lap you better suck it up because you’re going to see it again very shortly when you’re beginning to feel the fatigue setting in.  The cross winds were horrific, the head winds were brutal but the tailwinds were awesome.

Unfortunately every second you made up with the tailwind was soon stripped off you when you turned a corner and there were lots of corners!  When you’re cycling along and all you can see are the backs of windmills you know that you’re in for a bad time.  For a circular course, i’m sure i saw the backs of windmills constantly, or at least it felt like it.

At the end of the second loop it was time to join the 10km stretch back to T2 and mentally prepare for the 6 lap run that lay ahead.

The run, 6 laps of a 7k course sounded like hell to me when I was preparing for the race but it turned out to be fantastic. The course was one lap of the lake perimeter on a mix of pavement and trail which had been torn up by the all the rain that had fallen throughout the last 48 hours.  Music was playing at every corner of the course, groups of spectators making arches for you to run through and cheering you on, people reading your name from your tri suit and screaming it loudly  was awesome but the best part was passing loved ones each lap and getting the encouragement that only they can give.   Every lap, as the pain is setting in, getting the mental kick in the backside to man up and run is much needed, plus also getting a running commentary as to how John and Rory were doing made it fantastic knowing that we were all wearing the kit and doing it justice.

The last lap was difficult, my legs weren’t listening anymore but it was just a case of getting to the finish and enjoying the moment.  It was a great feeling not having to start another lap but instead turn and run down the finish chute with family and friends and people you don’t know cheering you on.

It was a great day and even better to have shared it with John and Rory.  I said right after Almere that i was stepping down from long course racing for a year….that lasted less than a month!  Kalmar 2018 anyone?

position Name Time Category
58 Mark Hopkins 9:38:38 M40
63 John Wigham 9:43:30 M40
152 Rory Fairbairn 10:27:23 M40



Huntly Standard Triathlon

Three M3ers ventured up to the small town of Huntly in Aberdeenshire to take part in one of the only pool based standard triathlons in Scotland. 60 lengths of a pool in race conditions isn’t at the top of every triathletes wish-list, so kudos to you all!
position Name Time Category Cat. Position
22 Alan Rose 2:34:15 Male Vet 18
45 Miriam Rennet 2:44:28 Female Super Vet 2
72 Ute Goldmann 3:16:42 Female Super Vet 6

Gordonstoun Sprint Triathlon

I’m convinced that every town in Scotland has a triathlon, and this race goes toward proving that! Situated between Lossiemouth and Findhorn, Christine headed north for a very picturesque sprint triathlon in Gordonstoun, finishing 3rd in the Female Vet category, congrats!.

position Name Time Category Cat. Position
33 Christine Bird 1:40:09 F Vet 3


St. Andrews Middle distance

A new race on the Scottish triathlon calendar this year, anyone familiar with the scottish triathlon series will know that these races are normally just a bit tougher than your average and on paper this race looked no exception! With a sea swim that looked a little choppy, including an Australian exit and with a run along the beach and up a few hills for good measure, as can be seen from the photos below, this looked like a hard days racing!

Representing M3 we had Adam Wilson and Robert Harrison with Robert managing to take overall victory, well done fellas.

position Name Time Category
1 Robert Harrison 4:50:36 MVet
51 Adam Wilson 7:25:37 MSen


St. Andrews Duathlon

The normal end of season blast out across in St. Andrews, with a very close race between 3 M3ers, with just 58 seconds separating Dave, Callum & Jamie at the end of the race. This time around age beat youth with Dave also coming home as the 1st male supervet.

position Name Time Category Cat. Position
14 David Stewart 1:10:54 M Super Vet 1
16 Callum Rennet 1:11:38 M Senior 13
19 Jamie Robinson 1:11:52 M Senior 15
43 Zoe Ni Dhuinn-Bhig 1:29:07  F Senior   3
62 Jim Paton 1:47:46 F Vintage 3

Dundee University Aquathlon

Another local end of season blast is the Aquathlon hosted by Dundee uni tri club. A well supported event by M3 saw 8 members racing with EVERYONE finishing within the top 3 of their category. A massive congratulations to Callum Rennet too for finishing 3rd overall.

position Name Time Category Cat. Position
3 Callum Rennet 30:28 M Senior 3
15 Rory Fairbairn 32:24 M Vet 1
20 Diane Placetino 33:55 F Vet 1
38 Barbara Sweeney 37:53 F Super Vet 1
44 Bruce Simpson 38:45 M Super Vet 3
51 Stewart Maxwell 40:02 M Vintage 1
74 Jim Paton 46:28 M Vintage 2
82 Barbara Brown 58:52 F Vintage 1

Knockburn Standard – Scottish Champs

The last Scottish championship race of the season, and it had that feeling about it! With the temperature that bit colder (in and out the water) and a strong, chilly wind (see photo below for proof of wind!), we were all feeling a bit tentative before the race.

A nice controlled swim twice round the loch followed by a quiet and quick bike where the weather didn’t seem to come into play. However the run course is fairly exposed and we faced a stiff wind on the climb before the turning point on the run course. Callum Rennet lead the M3ers home with a number of members narrowly missing out on an age cat podium but with Michelle somehow getting a prize despite coming 4th, can’t remember exactly why 🙂

The benefits of this race include a later start time meaning no need to stay over, a purpose built environment, the loch & the run course are designated for the triathlon that day and the bike course is quiet!

position Name Time Category Cat. Position
21 Callum Rennet 2:22:13 M Sen 12
35 David Stewart 2:29:13 M Super Vet 4
44 Lewis Bruce 2:33:33 M Sen 22
45 Michelle Mackay 2:33:44 F Sen 4
58 Dougal Adamson 2:37:33 M Super Vet 8
84 Gillian Sangster 2:45:02 F Vet 4
116 Miriam Rennet 2:56:10 F Super Vet 5
156 Stewart Maxwell 3:32:24 M Vintage 4

Vitruvian Triathlon – British Middle Distance Championships

Expand for Race Report courtesy of Robert Harrison

The 2017 Vitruvian was the British Middle Distance Age Group Championships and took place on Saturday 9th September 2017. I traveled down after work the previous evening to a Travelodge within a short drive of the race start at Rutland Water, roughly level with Birmingham on the map.

It was an early start on race day with transition open from 4:50am and the race briefing at 6am so I packed a head torch to allow for setting up in the dark. Needless to say I could not find this after parking the car in a field on race morning and fumbled my way through setting up my bike etc. using the light on my phone. With little time to spare I got down to transition to find the whole area alight with floodlights! Nothing in the race info about that!

With everything finally sorted in transition I had a little bit of time to check the race start which was a beach/mud start into cloudy water with a number of rocks underfoot. Having looked around for a ‘safe’ place to run in at the race started I concluded that this would not be possible as there were too many rocks about and decided just to trust my luck at the race start. I was off with 116 others in the Male 45-49 wave and managed to run in fairly quickly despite the potential underfoot. Unfortunately most of the fast swimmers seemed to be on my right and I missed the front group of about 9 or 10. I then settled into a steady rhythm completing the first lap on my own. After running back out and into the water at the end of the first lap I settled into the 2nd pack and took advantage of swimming on some feet for the rest of the course.

The bike segment was undulating with some reasonable climbs and also some no-passing areas at junctions and through a couple of villages. I rode the whole course on my own whilst overtaking a lot of the slower cyclists from the earlier waves. The course was over two laps which meant further negotiation of other cyclists on lap 2 with over 700 people on the course. I tried to hold a steady pace but slowed slightly on lap 2. The most frustrating part of the race was the no-passing zones. One lasted for about half a mile each lap through a village and, as I suspected, both times I rode up behind cyclists going at a very leisurely pace. It took all my will power not to nip past but this was definitely worth it as there were a number of ‘spotters’ on the course resulting in 15 DQs. Nutrition went well with a mixture of gels and energy drink.

As I reached the end of the bike course I had no idea where I was placed in my age group. There were no out and back sections on the course to gauge where others might be. I followed my usual routine of getting my feet out on top of the shoes and trying to spot the dismount line early. Everything went well in T2 and, as I was running out, I thought that I could hear the announcer say that I was in 3rd place in my age group. I was pleased with this as I am usually a strong runner and thought that there could be a chance of an age group win.

The run course was also 2 laps but this time they were out and back. This meant that, in theory, I was able to see where my competition was. The start of the run was very quiet as I was towards the front of the field by now. It was a flat course along the side of the reservoir but open to a rising south westerly wind. My pace was fairly good at the start at about 6:20/mile, which is about the fastest average I have held in a half ironman, but I was having to work fairly hard to achieve this. I certainly wasn’t ‘flowing’. My thinking was that I already had a bronze and a silver in my age group at middle distance from previous years so I might as well go for it and tried to hold the pace.

As I approached the turn I was looking for the number range for 45-49 on the race belts of my competitors. The 40-44 age group had started 10 mins ahead and I noticed a few of them coming back towards me as well as someone who was in my category. Unfortunately I still had a fair bit to go to the turn and my competition looked like he had not even been on a bike. He was bouncing along with apparent ease. After checking my time to the turn (at quarter distance) I worked out that he was about 5 mins ahead and there was little chance of catching him. During this phase I was trying to check race numbers for others in 45-49. I could not see anybody else in my age group displaying their number but the cross wind had caused a lot of numbers to be blown to the side or back. I kept pushing on to stay ahead of those behind and with a long shot of catching the leader if he cramped or had nutrition problems.

The rest really was a run time trial looking at my Garmin, taking on water/gels and desperately trying not to fade towards the end. My feet were really starting to hurt due to my choice of lightweight shoes to save a few seconds (not sure if they really did). I did fade a little to 6:45 pace at the end and was not able to catch the leader in my age group. However, I did pass somebody in my age group out there and came in 2nd in my age group and 12th overall (if you discount the relay teams).

On reflection I think that I paced the race well and held my nerve when I seemed to have to ride so slowly in the no passing zones. I think I could have reacted quicker to the lead group moving away on the swim but, other than that, everything went to plan. The chap who beat me was clearly fitter on the day and pulled out an excellent race to finish 4th overall. Other than not highlighting the floodlighting in transition, the race organisation was excellent and I would definitely consider returning to The Vitruvian.

position Name Time Cat Cat position
14 Robert Harrison 4:12:48 M45-49 2

Craggy island Triathlon

3 M3ers at the the Craggy tri which is an off-road triathlon where racers swim from Oban bay across to the island before a circumnavigation by bike with a off-piste run to finish. A tough day out, this race has now been immortalised in M3 history thanks to the Adam Wilson race face.

Saturday Race

position Name Time No Cat information online
98 adam Wilson 02:10:15

Sunday Race

position Name Time
67 Diane Placetino 1:58:24
114 Marco Placetino 2:11:52



2017 Cross-Tri  & Aquathlon World Championships – Penticton, Canada

Now an update on the President and First Ladie’s global multi-sport crusade. Not content with the european cross champs, Dave & Ursula headed to Canada with Dave taking part in the Cross-Tri champs and both Ursula & Dave racing in the world Aquathlon championships. Good results for both, job done, meaning all that was left to do was make everyone on facebook extremely jealous of their holiday in Canada 😀


Name Time Cat. Cat position
David Stewart 3:10:02 M50-54 13


Name Time Cat. Cat position
David Stewart 42:10 M50-54 9
Ursula Ryder 50:01 F55-59 12

ABC Winter Series Duathlon – Round 1

And finally, the Monikie winter series duathlon, a staple event for all hardy triathletes looking to race on through the winter elements.

Always featuring talking points, including an absolute rapid T1 time from Alan Rose (as he forgot to put on his helmet) and a poor start to the bike from Jamie Robinson (as he forgot how to clip into bike pedals?), thanks to Adam for being there to capture the action, is it too early to take nominations for next years club awards? 🙂

Position Name Time Cat.
3 Robert Harrison 50:27 MVET
14 David Stewart 55:15 MSVET
19 David Miller 57:12 MVET
34 Jamie Robinson 1:00:13 MSEN
45 Dougal Adamson 1:02:16 MSVET
51 Brian Simpson 1:03:42 MSVET
59 Miriam Rennet 1:05:13 FSVET
63 Zoe  Ni Dhuinn-Bhig 1:08:09 FSEN
64 Bruce Simpson 1:08:49 MSVET
77 Pauline Fairbairn 1:13:13 FVET
82 Zoe Simpson 1:15:16 FVET
83 Barbara Carr 1:15:16 FVET
89 Jim Paton 1:23:38 MVINT


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