Ennis Triumphant at Mixed Team Relay Champs

Lough Cutra Mixed Team Relay2019_Handover1

The stars of the future demonstrated their talent at Lough Cutra Castle today for the opening day of a weekend full of sport! The multisport community focus is on Lough Cutra Castle Triathlon this weekend with a huge range of events to take part in over the two days. On Saturday morning athletes could choose from a sprint triathlon, sprint plus triathlon, duathlon and aquathlon as well as open water swims and junior races.

LoughCutra2019_Maeve Gallagher

Junior athletes were out in full force throughout the day. Maeve Gallagher won the sprint triathlon in the morning, leading from the swim to the finish line. Later in the day a team of teenagers from Ennis Triathlon Club put on a masterclass in this exciting new version of the sport to take home the Club Mixed Team Relay National Championship title.

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An Electric atmosphere

Hosting the championships for the third year, the excitement and buzz built from lunchtime at Lough Cutra Castle for the 3pm start of 27 teams in the Club Mixed Team Relay National Championships. In this exciting format of racing, making its debut at Tokyo 2020, a team of four athletes race together. The team must consist of two men and two women, each racing a 200 metre swim, 5 kilometre bike and 1.5 kilometre run.

LoughCutra2019_MixedTeamRelay Ennis Group Pic

The juniors from Ennis led from the off with Ella Doherty building a sizeable lead over such a short distance. She stayed away out on the bike course where Belpark's Maeve Maher-McWilliams made up a few spaces to enter T2 in second. Further back in the field the battle for third was between Athy Triathlon Club, Cavan Triathlon Club, Portmarnock Triathlon Club and Limerick TC.

Lough Cutra 2019_Mixed Team Relay Belpark

Battle for second place

The Limerick Triathlon Club team consisting of Shona Keane, Luke Lyons, Hilkka Kontro and Aaron O'Brien worked their way through the field, with Aaron exiting his T2 on the final leg seconds behind second placed David Power from Belpark. Power held the lead over the short bike and run for the Belpark team to secure the silver for team mates Maeve Maher-McWilliams, Andy Grehan and Deirdre McNally.

The winning team of Ella Doherty, Daragh O'Neill, Carla Griffin and Sabian Kulczynski were never under pressure from start to finish - even across such short course distances. Time spent practicing transition and mount-line skills were evident as this team spared vital seconds with clean transitions and speedy dismounts. Crossing the line with over three minutes to spare, Ennis Triathlon Club are 2019 Club Mixed Team Relay National Champions.

Two teams from the Triathlon Ireland Emerging Talent Programme also took part in the Mixed Team Relay to gain experience but were not racing in the championship. The eight junior triathletes certainly showed their talent amongst the strong field.

LoughCutra2019_Mixed Team Relay LimerickTC

This weekend has provided a good warm-up for Ella Doherty, Maeve Gallagher and Sabian Kulczynski - all travelling to the Weert ETU Triathlon European Championships next weekend to represent Team Ireland in the junior races.

At Lough Cutra the action continues on Sunday with the National Aquabike Championship and the BMW Triathlon National Series standard distance race.

The Gallery of images from the Mixed Team Relay can be viewed on the Triathlon Ireland Facebook Page here.

Lough Cutra 2019_Mixed Team Relay Group Podium Pic