Sri Chinmoy Triple-Triathlon Race Report 2008
For the first time in the history of the Sri Chinmoy Triple-Triathlon, the entire field- every solo entrant and every team- crossed the finish line, and all within the cut-off time. Though a few team members did not complete their legs and one or two cut-offs were missed along the way, this achievement is an extraordinary testament to the spirit and commitment of the field, aided by the best conditions yet experienced for the race.
Trevor Fairhurst came out of the water after the first swim ahead of his solo rivals, though it was not long before first-time solo entrant Alex Ramsay from Sydney, passed Trevor on the bike. Alex would hold his lead for over 7 hours, until the decisive 2nd run course over Mt Taylor, where Trevor's consistency and experience came into their own. Once into the final triathlon, Trevor was not headed, finishing in 11:58:09 for his 4th victory, equalling Paul Smith's record number of outright titles in this gruelling race.
Alex rallied well, to finish second in 12:21:52, ahead of another first-timer Craig Wyman (12:52:27) and the ever-popular Steven Barry (14:04:41).
In the entire solo women's field, only Laura Marshall had attempted the race solo before. The race at the front was similar to the men's, with Zoe Cameron leading from the start until Kate Chapman- formerly of Canberra and now residing in the USA- made her move on the 2nd run leg. Like Trevor, Kate's ultra-endurance experience came to the fore during the final triathlon. Kate also benefitted from lots of advice from women's solo record-holder, Julie Quinn, who contented herself this year with a single run leg in a team of 9. Kate crossed the line in 13:29:59, with Zoe also breaking the 14-hour barrier with 13:59:17.
With the official awards ceremony being held at 8 pm, there were only a few teams and one solo racer still on the course. Many stayed, enjoying the atmosphere until Laura Marshall crossed the line in a moment of personal triumph, after 16:11:26- also setting a new record for the fastest last-placed finisher!
It was a good day for the more experienced teams. The "GoGoGirls 50+" team broke their own record for the Female Team of 9 (All Over 50) Category, with an astonishing combined time of 11:50:16.
Meanwhile "Rad's Racers" also set a new time for the corresponding Open Team of 9 (All Over 50) Category, of 12:42:30- albeit nearly one hour behind the ladies!
Unlike some of the nail-biting tussles in the Open Team of 3 Category in the past, "Stuff the Puffs" this year finished over one hour clear of their rivals in 9:22:49, even allowing Trevor Jacobs the luxury of handing the baton for the final run leg to team swimmer John Fleming. Team biker David Osmond continued his domination of the bike courses, having completed every bike leg in every Triple-Tri since the event was born (and still owning the outright fastest time for the 1st bike course, from 10 years ago!)
"Velocity Vixens" returned to continue their domination of the Female Team of 3 Division, finishing in 11:24:53- showing the wisdom of mixing up the legs, with each member completing one swim and dividing the run and bike legs between them.
Most competitive Mixed Teams of 3 have featured a female swimmer. Vanessa Haverd showed that a mixed team can compete well with a female runner- if she happens to be an out-and-out champion! Vanessa anchored "The Long Road To Tuggers" to their victory in 10:28:05, making up 6 minutes in the final run alone to turn the tables on "The Return of the Fly Eaters."
The Teams Category with the most intense competition on the day was the Open Teams of 9, with Luke Grattan's "The Team with No Name" ultimately prevailing in 8:53:12- the only team under 9 hours on the day- but not before some early scares from "Onya Bike Belconnen" and "Oldies but Goodies."
The all-star and line-up of "Femme Fetale" returned to claim the prize in the Female Team of 9, crossing in 11:29:23 ahead of "Who Let the Dogs Out?" and "Rad's Roses."
The Mixed Team of 9 Category was won by "Tri or Die" in 10:54:49.
Veteran Triple-Tri participant and new Speaker of the ACT Legislative Assembly, Shane Rattenbury, was delighted to present the awards, and vowed to return as a participant again next year.
Full results by category, and overall, for the 12th 2008 Sri Chinmoy Triple-Triathlon, staged in and around Canberra on Sunday 16 November 2008.