The King of The Hill triathlon took place in Kinsale on Saturday the 27th of July. This popular, but tough, sprint distance race, which is organised Cork Tri Club, has been running in Kinsale for the last 19 years. This year Blackwater Triathlon Club designated this as one of our club events, where we try to get as many of our members as possible to take part in a specific local triathlon. As a result we had nearly thirty members taking part on Saturday, just over one in ten of the 265 athletes who started on the day. After all the recent unseasonable weather, there was a change of conditions on Saturday morning and the day dawned bright and sunny. The race is part of this year’s Tri Munster league and had a very high quality field competing on the day. The race started with a calm and enjoyable 750m swim at the sheltered Dock Beach in Kinsale. This was followed by an undulating 22km bike ride in pleasant conditions, with only a light headwind on the route out to contend with. The event finished off with a 5km run out and back over the eponymous hills, the highpoint of which was the 750m downhill section to the finish line. The first kilometre of the run was up the hill that the race is named after and to some of the triathletes it seemed to go on forever. It was especially difficult watching some of the competitors virtually skipping up it. When you get off the first hill you go down the other side which is steep and then it kicks in you have that to look forward to on the way back! There was at least a nice run on the flat piece for about a km to help people recover a little though, before it was time to turn around and do it all again in reverse. Back up the steeper side of the hill and then 800 metres downhill to finish line. We had a lot of really good performances from BTC athletes on the day, especially amongst our female contingent. Deidre Morrison was first in the 35-39 age group, crossing the finish line in 1:27:25, just 14 seconds faster than her club compatriot Eileen Ryan who was second in the same category in 1:27:39. Niamh Fleming came first in the female 50-54 category in 1:45:18 and Ashley Byrne O’Brien came third in the 30-34 age-group in 1:31:23. Amongst the BTC men, Justin Ryan continued his recent run of good form, finishing 6th overall and second in his age group in a time of 1:13:32. BTC chairman, Shane Collins, beat his time from last year’s race by over 7 minutes, crossing the finish line in 1:17:01, in 16th place overall. It was also a good day for our veteran athletes with Donal Murphy, Dave Bartley and Justin McCarthy coming in 3rd, 5th and 6th places respectively in the 50-54 age-group. Their times were 1:24:59, 1:25:59 and 1:26:32. Brian Baker and Mick Beston, both of whom regularly feature highly in the 55-59 age-group competitions, were at it again on Saturday, finishing 2nd and 3rd in their category, in times of 1:22:14 and 1:29:44. It was a really good day for all of our competitors and there was a moment towards the end of the day which perfectly encapsulated the spirit and club ethos of the Blackwater Triathlon Club. As club member Julian Boeg, who has a prosthetic leg, was approaching the finish line, he was cheered across the line by an impromptu guard of honour of club members, much to the delight of the on looking spectators and other competitors. This is what triathlon is all about. Well done to everybody who took part on the day and to Cork Tri Club for once again organising an excellent race.