Kids of the West Triathlon
One of our junior members recently competed in the Kids of the West Triathlon in Clare. Here is his race report- well done!
2015 saw one of our Junior members return to Carrigaholt, Co Clare to defend his third
position finish from last year. Once again superb weather prevailed on the day and a
massive crowd of athletes and supporters assembled in the small town of Carrigaholt on
the Shannon Estuary. The event provided race waves for age categories, nominally 8 –
10, 11 – 13 and 14 – 16 and a splash & dash event for under age competitors.
As usual Limerick Triathlon Club working with Clare Sports Partnership had put a lot of
effort into this event and a large transition area was clearly marked out and taped off
behind the break-water and a large team of marshals to support the swim, bike and run
legs of the race. Kayak equipped marshals manned the swim course and a motorcycle
outrider was on hand to marshal the bike course.
A truly massive splash & dash entry was split into two races, again by age and this was
run ahead of the other age categories. Nerves were clearly obvious with many athletes
apparently anxious but the mood soon changed to one of pure competition as soon as the
starters claxon was heard. Like the last charge of the light brigade the field quickly
dispatched the water course and ran along the beach to the finish. All finishers received
an official medal which they proudly wore supporting the later races.
Running from the eldest wave to the youngest the triathlon was executed with military
precision. The standard of the swim leg on the 14 – 16 year old race was a clear hint that
there were some elite standard triathletes in the field. This form continued across the bike
leg and onto the run with very strong performances from Limerick and Galway based
Our single entry to the event now in a stronger age category than last year joined a large
field for the start of the 11 – 13 year old race. The swim leg was an out-back course
through the surf with the first half of the course into the current. Representing his club and
coaches very well our Junior was in the top four half way through the swim and maintained
his position to the first transition. Hampered by wet feet the first transition was a little slow
but our junior was looking forward to the bike leg. Due to a strong headwind on the uphill
outward section of the bike leg the race director had shortened the course from 6km to
3.5km. Not the best news for our junior who was hoping to move forwards on the bike but
he managed to hold position on the bike leg though the lead pair had stretched out their
The run was 1.9km out and back and with a couple of older athletes hot on his heels
leaving T2 his best efforts on the run still saw him lose a couple of places over the course.
Perhaps not as strong as last year but one of his strongest races and most likely a
personal record on the day which was very encouraging. The step up in age category
makes for stronger competition on the day but a solid top ten finish in a very strong field
was well deserved.
The final race of the day was the 8 – 10 year old category and had upwards of 25 entries.
The swim was again a demonstration of how much preparation goes into junior triathlon
with athletes battling through the surf. Once again the older and stronger within the
category seemed to slowly stretch their advantage on the bike leg with the podium
positions secured before the majority of bikes had returned from the cycle leg of the race.
Once again this event was a complete success and was supported with a huge entry.
Carrigaholt is a stunning place with a superb swimming beach, wide open area for
transition and quiet scenic roads for the bike and run legs. Many thanks again to Limerick
Triathlon Club and Clare Sports Partnership with support of Triathlon Ireland for a superb