By Karl Hayes (Full results by age group below. Photo gallery to come)
Aaron Royle and James Davy ran a scintillating 8kms off the bike in Callala to take out 1st and 2nd ahead of a Michael Fox and Sam Douglas. The two front boys ran 24:52/54 (3:06min/km). Royle led from start to finish. The swim saw the guys searching for the bouys and hesitating while trying to figure out where to go. This gave Royle the opportunity to get the jump and continue to swim hard. Once he had this lead he did not look back. Aaron then proceeded to put over a minute on the chasing pack on the bike and further extended his lead on the run. Aaron’s time of 1:22:56 was 2:14 faster than Davy.
Royle has been in Wollongong, since leaving school, at NSWIS under Jamie Turner. This environment obviously works for Aaron and today’s result showed what a hot prospect for 2012 Aaron is.
A week ago Aaron was in New Zealand racing in the ITU sanctioned Contact Cup series. He placed 5th overall with only 32 seconds between 1st and 5th. Brendan Sexton, Drew Box and Nicholas Hull also raced with Sexton placing 2nd overall. (Full results)
James Davy swam and rode with Fox, Douglas and Farrant but his run, at over a minute quicker, pushed him into a clear second place.
Michael Fox came off a win at Kurnell last weekend after squaring the ledger against Sam Douglas. But he was a little surprised at the speed of Aaron Royle. Fox and Douglas possibly suffered a little from watching each other rather than the field as they compete for the series title. Last week at Kurnell neither had to worry about the series points and the result was a good race with Fox going for it in the run.
Lisa Marangon and Matilda Raynolds were left to battle it out for the open women’s title. Raynolds took the wise decision to not go off with the guys knowing that Lisa’s swim strength would enable her to get on the feet of the faster guys. This paid off somewhat with Matilda coming out of the water only 23 seconds behind Marangon. Although during the swim some of the navigation skills of the lead female meant that she ended up swimming a bit more than the 1km she should have. On the bike Lisa put about a minute on Matilda which meant that Matilda would have to dig deep on the run. She did but it was not quite enough. With a quicker run Matilda pulled the gap back to just under one minute at the end of the race. Lisa finished in 1:33:51 with Matilda second in 1:34:48.
There were some quick age groupers mixing it up with the open guys. Adam Conquest used his well known bike strength to be the first age grouper home and 7th overall. Second age grouper home and in the same category as Conquest was Ben Bell who swam a minute faster and ran almost a minute faster but could not make up the bike difference.
First female age grouper home was Lauren Fitzgerald in 28th place overall and with a very even spread of good times across all three legs. Sarah Fletcher was the next female age grouper with a good swim and solid run but her bike was where she lost it to Lauren.