On Saturday the 15th of September there was a major exodus from the Fermoy area as no fewer than 28 Blackwater Triathlon Club members took part in the Dungarvan Triathlon. The BTC contingent was further swelled by assorted family members and supporters and we even brought our own photographer to document the exploits of our athletes. There were two races taking place on the day, an Olympic distance event and a sprint race. The Olympic distance consisted of a 1500m swim, a 40km cycle and a 10km run. 150 athletes started the race , including BTC members Conor Bartley, Brian Baker, Aidan Sheridan, Shane Collins, Jonathan Kenneally, Martin Feeney, Peter O’Brien, Adam Blaiklock, David Harte, Pat Finn and Adrian Collins. We were also well represented in the sprint event on the day with seventeen Blackwater Triathlon Club members amongst the 260 starters. This event consisted of a 750m swim, a 23km bike section and a 5km run. Experienced BTC members such as Mick Beston, Justin McCarthy, Bill McAuliffe, Mark Ryan, Ann Lyons, Julian Boeg and Catherine Quirke all took part on the day. There was also a very good contingent of newer members such as Dave Murphy, Shane Fleming, Harry Feeney, George Clancy, Jim Crowley, Niall O’Riordain and Kevin O’Farrell. Despite having previously competed in other races this was a first triathlon for Eileen Ryan in BTC colours. Frank Kiernan was racing for the first time in a couple of years and discovered that his old tri suit wasn’t quite as comfortable as he remembered. For Sean Lomansney this was a triathlon debut and he had a great day finishing eigth in his age group category. Weather conditions on the day were near perfect. There had been a worry that the tail ends of some Atlantic storms might disrupt proceedings , but the organisers must have said the right prayers and the wind and the rain stayed away. Swim conditions were perfect, with a 750 metre loop in the bay. The sprint racers did this once while the Olympic competitors had to do 2 laps of 750m with an Australian exit in the middle. An Australian exit is where the swimmers get out of the sea after the first lap and then run around a flag to the start point again for the second lap. The Olympic race started first with a single wave followed closely by two waves for the Sprint competitors.
Julian Boeg was the first of the BTC swimmers out of the water in the sprint race, completeing the 750 metre loop in just over 13 minutes and beating Justin McCarthy by a mere 8 seconds. Jonathan Kenneally was the first of our crew out of the Olympic swim, exiting the water in 29:06, just 9 seconds ahead of Shane Collins. Both the Sprint and Olympic cycles undulating out and back routes with some less than perfect road surfaces in places. The route was well marshalled however, and all of the athletes made it back to transition safely. The run route was quite flat and made for some fast runs. Dave Murphy was the first BTC member home in the sprint race, finishing in 1:20:20. Mick Beston also had a very good day, powering home in a very impressive1:28:34 to win his age group category in the sprint. Frank Kiernan, following the example of his wife, Ann, in the Lost Sheep Triathlon a couple of weeks earlier, got a little help from his son Joey crossing the line and Kay Quirke would have put Usain Bolt to shame with her sprint for the finish line! Conor bartley was the first Blackwater member to finish the Olympic distance race, finishing in an excellent time of 2:30:45. Brian Baker was once again on the podium as he crossed the line in 2:34:35 claiming second place in his age group category on the day. All 28 club members performed really well on the day, testament to all the hard work they have been putting in during the year. The event itself was very well organised considering such a huge crowd with the 2 events on at same time. Well done to the folks in Dungarvan for pulling it off. There were further shenanigans in Lombard’s bar in Fermoy later that evening as everyone gathered for a few drinks to celebrate the day. Once again great fun was had by all, enlivened even further by some displays of card trickery from our very own resident magician, Bill McAuliffe.