Autumn Newsletter 2019

Message from our Chair

Welcome to the first ever Isle of Wight Triathlon Club newsletter. We hope that you find it an interesting way to catch up on what our athletes have been achieving over the last few months, find out a few tips for the future and stay up to date with our training schedule. As more people discover what a great sport triathlon is, and how our coaches are delivering engaging and fun sessions, the club is getting increasingly popular. We have an extensive waiting list for people to join which is wonderful! However, we are limited by the number of coaches we have and the capacity of the pool on Sundays. It would be great to see that everyone attending swimming on Sundays are keen to do so as part of triathlon training – not necessarily to compete straight away but to build skills across all three disciplines. It is after all a triathlon club. If our athletes are only attending the swimming sessions then we are keen to understand why. With this in mind, a survey will be forwarded to all members asking them how the club can develop the running and cycling sessions to encourage greater participation and whether it is triathlon the member is interested in or just swimming. If we could encourage parents to ensure this is completed that would be great. We can use the feedback to develop our sessions further.

There is one event left this season (Bowood Duathlon 13th October) and of course training sessions will continue throughout winter. Finally, I would like to thank the coaches for their continued commitment and our brilliant young triathletes or their enthusiasm, dedication and hard work. Your smiles and friendships are what makes this club so special.

James Gradwell, Chair

WOW! 2019 has been such a busy year for our athletes and the list opposite is all the events our members have between them competed at. The majority of these events take place on the mainland which require significant commitment and dedication from the juniors, youths and their
families. We love watching yourenthusiasm, talent and camaraderie when you are are out
representing the club and hearing about your successes. Well done to all of you. We encourage all of our athletes to put their hard work to good use in a competitive environment and we are happy to support anyone who might find this process daunting. Please feel free chat to one of our coaches.

• Ashridge Duathlon
• Portsmouth Duathlon Series
• Spring Duathlon at Goodwood
• Woking Aquathlon
• Wight Tri Spring Triathlon
• Hart Aquathlon
• Llanelli Sprint Triathlon
• Crystal Palace Triathlon
• Newchurch Nine Run
• Fareham Triathlon
• Trent Park Aquathlon
• Chapel Aquathlon
• Henley Open Water Triathlon
• Leeds Triathlon
• Horsham Triathlon
• Twyford Triathlon
• Bowood House Triathlon
• Club Aquathlon
• Chichester Triathlon
• Castle Howard Triathlon
• Dash and Splash 5k
• Billingshurst Triathlon
• Henley Kids Fun Triathlon
• Splash and Dash Kids Aquathlon
• British Elite Championships
• English Aquathlon Championships
• Hever Castle Triathlon
• Bowood House Duathlon

We have celebrated many success stories from these events. There have been podium places at lots of events, some juniors have competed for the very first time, others have taken part in the British Triathlon South Central Regional Series events, parents and younger siblings have competed. Notably, one of our older members has competed at some of the highest level events representing the club at the Sprint Distance Duathlon World Championships Qualifier, the British Elite Championships and the English Aquathlon Championships. What great representation for our island club and a great role model for our younger members.

Our level 2 coach Julie is a founding member of the club. An accomplished swimmer and swim coach,
Julie is passionate about helping our athletes fulfil their goals in all three disciplines of triathlons and encourage their love for sport.

Simon is a level 1 coach and comes to the club with a wealth of competitive experience, having competed at European level in duathlon.

Mark is also a level 1 coach and has been taking part in triathlons for nearly 20 years. He is committed to provided fun sessions and encouraging participation in events for all of our members.

We are on the look out for new coaches. This is a rewarding community volunteer role helping our junior athletes achieve their personal triathlon challenges. If you think this is something you can help with then do please get in touch.


You can never practice too much at transitions. Every second counts in a large field of athletes.


It is good practice to go for a short jog after a cycle session. It doesn’t have to be far but gets your legs used to working after the bike.


Get all your kit together the night before a race. Preparation makes a huge difference instead of running round trying to find things.


Always listen to the pre-race briefing. Get yourself as close as possible to the race officer so you can hear. Don’t be afraid to ask questions.


Please don’t forget necessary items for training sessions. Goggles, fins and pull buoys for swimming. Helmets for cycle sessions. Water bottles for all sessions. Ensure any inhalers required are with you at all times.

We hosted a fabulous Race Night earlier on this year which raised vital funds for the club. We have bought the swim secure tow floats which have been brilliant for our open water swim sessions. Money raised also enabled us to offer a skills day. We are grateful to our two sponsors, Beardsalls Print-Design-Sign ( and Tignes Apartment ( who contributed to the purchase of a fantastic club gazebo. We have been able to pitch this at events to provide invaluable shade/shelter and create a base and a presence for the club.

The club welcomed Di Murray from Synergie Coaching to the island for a full day of triathlon coaching in the summer holiday. Our members on the day ranged from ages 7-16 and were kept busy with an open water sea swim session in the morning and then an afternoon spent working on cycle technique and running activities focused on teamwork. The day was finished off with a fun relay. Our athletes learnt a lot but most importantly had enormous fun together.

HEVER CASTLE TRIATHLON 28th/29th September

This event is always our last triathlon of the season and is a highlight of our club’s calendar.  We had five tents and two camper vans camping which made for a super fun and sociable weekend.  Coach Mark, along with Lottie and Thomas, all competed in the super sprint.  Lottie at age 14 was the first female out of the lake after a 750m swim!  Great to see them have the confidence to compete with the adults.

Later in the afternoon, it was Phoebe and Jasper’s turn.  Taking part in such a huge event (nearly 400 competitors in the 8-10 year olds race) is daunting for a couple of 9 year olds but both were brilliant and showed great determination.  Jasper showed just how far he had come in 12 months with a 31st place compared to 158th place the previous year!

After a fabulous fun evening in the campsite, the camping group spent part of the next morning cheering on the adult middle distance and Olympic distance cyclists.  And then, after fuelling up with brunch at the local golf club,  it was back to the race village for James, Gethin, Ben, Billy, Jess and Orla to compete.  It was muddy and wet and in light of those conditions, race officials decided to neutralise transition which meant that transition times didn’t count towards their finish time.  Ben took full advantage of this rest time and, given the amount of time he took to appear on his bike, we wondered if he was settling down to a picnic!  Again there was fantastic progression from the previous years results.

An amazing weekend and we are already looking forward to next year.


Well done to Jasper, Bella, Ben, Gethin, Billy, Lottie, Thomas, James and Millie. Lottie achieved second place in the youth race which is fabulous.  They had great fun supporting each other around the course and those who have done this race before showed just how far they had progressed.