Jackson and Foley Win Duathlon National Championships 2017

Duathlon National Champs DJ Pic 1

Heather Foley and Kieran Jackson have been crowned National Duathlon Champions for 2017 following two contrasting but equally impressive performances at the Predator Triathlon Club organised race in Clarnebridge, Co. Galway.

Foley claimed her third Duathlon National Championships in a row with a commanding performance from start to finish while Jackson made up a large deficit on the final run leg to take the lead with just one kilometre to go.

The win is Jackson’s first national title and follows his third place position in last year’s championships.

In all, more than 200 athletes raced in windy but sunny and reasonably warm conditions in Clarenbridge, Co Galway.

Duathlon National Champs DJ Pic 2

Men’s Race

In the men’s race, Jackson and fellow High Performance Development athlete Con Doherty were first to enter T1 after a blisteringly quick first 7.5km run. Behind them Rory Sexton and John Greaney came in to T1 20secs back with Mick Fogarty, Stephen Donnelly and Killian Heerey rounding out the top seven.

One notable absence from the front runners was last year’s champion Bryan McCrystal, who came in to T1 back in 14th place, 2mins 16secs down on the leaders. But by the time the riders had completed the first of two laps on the 37km bike course, McCrystal had clawed back the entirety of this deficit.

By the time he reached T2, McCrystal's bike time of 52:50 put him more than 3mins ahead of Jackson and Sexton who came out of T2 together but it wasn’t to be enough as Jackson put in the quickest run split of the race and caught McCrystal with one kilometre to go.

“When people were saying two mins, 2:30mins, I thought in four and a half kilometres, he can run fast, but I just put the hammer down, dug in and I was closing in on him,” Jackson said after the race.

He crossed the line to take his first senior national title by 37secs over McCrystal who held on to 2nd place.

Rory Sexton took the bronze medal position, a further 20secs behind McCrystal.

Duathlon National Champs DJ Pic 13

Women’s Race

In the women’s race, last year’s champion Heather Foley led from start to finish with a commanding overall performance that saw her take the Duathlon National Championships for the third year in a row.

Foley ran a 27:27 first run, biked the 37km course in 1hr 2mins 52secs and completed her dominant display by running a 17mins 49secs second run - the quickest splits in all three legs of the women’s race. She crossed the line in 1hr 49mins 39secs.

Second place went to Lorraine Carey in 1hr 51mins 29secs with Barbara Dunne coming third with a time of 1hr 55mins 11secs.

Foley said afterwards that her plan was to go out “really hard and try to hang on”.

“I had a slower start to the season that last year so it was a bit of a shock to the system but I’m delighted. I didn’t expect it to be so windy, between the wind and the surface, you were always battling so it was a tough bike but it was a good course and I really enjoyed the run.”

Provisional Results will be available shortly and posted to this page.