PACTRAC man wins an African Championship

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Peterborough Triathlon Club (PACTRAC) member Roger Canham has qualified for the World Ironman Championships for the seventh time.

And he did it by winning an African Championship title at Nelson Mandela Bay in Port Elizabeth, South Africa, on Sunday.

Competing over a 2.4-mile swim, 112-mile bike ride and 26.2-mile run, he completed the course in 10hrs 5mins and 31secs to place 74th overalll and first in the 50-54 age group.

And that age group win earned him a place in the GB team to compete at the World Championships in Kona, Hawaii, in October.

Canham said: “I did Ironman South Africa in 2009 and won my first age group title there so I have fond memories of this event.

“The course had changed this year - it was a lot tougher - and the field was bigger and deeper.

“But I gave it my best shot and all the long, wet and cold training sessions during the winter months paid off.

“The organisers had to clear the water of Tiger Sharks before the race started and thankfully there was no sign of them when we were in the water!”

Closer to home, PACTRAC’s Steve Coombes meanwhile competed at Hole Park in Cranbrook, Kent, at the weekend in the English National Cross Duathlon Championships and finished 19th.

This was a mountain bike duathlon over the distances of run 6.25 miles, bike 16.25 miles and run three miles and Coombes finished in 2:36:10

The Elite Duathlon Championships were held at a rather windy Rockingham Motor Racing Circuit at Corby.

PACTRAC had three competitors in action in the various races.

Jonathan Oakey competed in the youth race and gave a good account of himself finishing just under four minutes behind the winner. He was 36th in 33:39.

Nathan Tweedie tackled the junior race finishing 22nd overall in 66:26 and six minutes and 52seconds behind the winner.

A few incidents and crashes on the bike meant that the Elite men’s and women’s races were both reduced to just a 6.25 mile (10km) running race, with no biking, as the wind picked up significantly.

Neil Tandy’s Elite race was, therefore, just a run and he pulled out after half-way, not wanting to aggravate a recurring injury.