Northwest Sprint Triathlon 2008, Derry

6th April 2008


Sunday morning was bright, but bitter cold, and the intermittent sleet-showers, although light, would have most mortals clambering to stay indoors. Not so for the 60 or so athletes who would toe the line in the North West Triathlon, at the Templemore Sports Complex in Derry. A 10.30am start was delayed owing to very strong crosswinds, leading to the race organisers reconsidering the racecourse to accommodate the adverse weather conditions. There was concern as to the effect of the wind on fast moving bicycles. After an hour or so, and after tweaking the 'cycle' part of the course, to avoid high ground, where gusts were strongest, the race-marshals called the athletes to the starting line.




It was clear from the start that this was going to be a competitive race as the athletes involved in the relay-event, set a blistering pace, which was matched by the individuals destined to complete all-three disciplines in the main event. A breakaway group of three runners set the early pace in the main event. This group included David Graham, Sean McFadden and Mathew Wilson.


Early Leaders


Transition, first time around, was busy, seeing the entire-field depart on their bicycles in a matter of a few short minutes. The race would develop out on the cycle as athletes competed for places and eventually the main body would be 'strung-out' as a result of the relentless pace, into a strong headwind, on the outward part of the cycle.


Tir Chonaill Athletic Club was represented by Noel Thomas in the main event. Noel was in fifteenth place when reaching the transition-area, first time around and decided that caution was best in the cycle, as the weather conditions and strong winds made the going hazardous. This tactic would result in having a good final run to claim back places lost during the cycle and this is exactly what transpired. Noel was indeed pleased with his performance as this was his first outing in a Triathlon.


Noel Thomas (Tír Chonaill AC)


Donegal was also represented by Stephen Travers. Stephen was in twenty ninth place after the first run and as he was introducing a new bicycle to the event decided to go with caution in the cycle also. On the day, Stephen was pleased with his performance and enjoyed the outing.


Stephen Travers (Donegal Town)


Gavan Crawford (Letterkenny AC)


Winners: Mathew Wilson (3rd), David Graham (1st)

& Sean McFadden (2nd)


Noel Thomas (Tír Chonaill AC) & Stephen Travers (Donegal)