Series draws record entry

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Tough conditions add to it all

MEAN MACHINES: The third instalment of the TRIBAL Triathlon Series drew a record crowd to the Orient Beach complex on Sunday Picture: MECHE GREEN/LORRINDA THOMAS

TRIBAL are very proud to announce that the third instalment of the TRIBAL Triathlon Series was a phenomenal success at the weekend.

The race, which comprised of mini, sprint and Olympic distances, attracted a record crowd to Orient Beach, despite clashing with some other major sporting events in the region.

A large contingent of 153 competitors were involved on a day that proved to throw some testing conditions at the athletes.

Large swells made the swim challenging, however, the athletes showed resilience, with almost all able to conquer the discipline.

A strong north-easterly wind kept the intensity high for the cycle, before the heat played its part to accompany the athletes on the run leg.

The event also doubled as the Buffalo City Triathlon’s Provincial Championship, with the athletes who hoped to race for the province having to dig deep to overcome the conditions.

Bradley Birkholtz, who has dominated the TRIBAL series so far, saw off some strong competition from local pro Clinton Gravett and the second placed Eben Hartslief, to eventually take the win in the Olympic distance race. The ladies race was also hotly contested, with Lauren van Wyk clinching the top spot, with Charlene Moss second, and Roxy Ward third.

TRIBAL Swim, Cycle, Run and Triathlon shop and events company sponsored athlete Wickus Saunders, who decimated the field in the Male Sprint category, won previously by his younger brother, Travis.

Matthew Raath and Anthony “Coxy” Cox joined Saunders on the podium.

The ladies race was also won by a regular winner, Danieke De Kock, who saw off valiant attacks from both Nicole Thysse and Candice Murray to seal her third win in as many races.

In the mini distance, Caleb Miestre solidified another win in his promising triathlon career, beating Nathan Gallacher and Oliver Lange to collect the gold medal.

The ladies race also proved to be a corker, with Kiara Herman taking the win from Emily Raath and Taryn Hensburg.

Speaking of his win, Birkholtz remained humble, saying: “The conditions were really tough, second only to Ironman 2012 I’d say.”

Birkholtz exited the water 1.30 mins down on Clinton Gravett.

Birkholtz said: “I managed to keep a solid power output on my bike, pushing the hills, and eventually caught Clinton on the third lap of the cycle. From there, I pushed hard for the first 4km of the run, and when I felt comfortable, I relaxed into a rhythm to the end.”

Birkholtz was also overwhelmed by the number of competitors.

“I am looking forward to seeing the continued growth of triathlon in this region,” he said.

Giddo Muller, CEO of TRIBAL, said: “We couldn’t have been happier with the event this weekend. The fans were fantastic, the racing thrilling and conditions made it an honest day out.

“We are very thankful to the sponsors, the organisers, and of course the athletes and their supporters, who made the day a win for all involved.”

The final event of the series will take place on Sunday December 3. A large crowd is expected again, as the race offers the ever popular Ultra Distance (1.8km swim, 60km cycle and 15km run), attracting competitors from around the country.

All results can be seen at: http://www.sgistiming.co.za

Additional Photos can be viewed at:

https://photos.app.goo.gl/LSDNuPSrXp3aoUC63

All photos are entitled to be used for publication. A video of the event can be viewed at: https://vimeo.com/242476265

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