Athletes travelled from across the country at the weekend to swim, cycle and run under glorious sunshine in the Lough Cutra Castle Triathlon in south Galway.
The triathlon was celebrating its 10th year at the privately owned Castle Estate, and the bumper festival of triathlon and multisport racing was yet another great success.
The weekend of racing saw participants take to the water to swim in the privately-owned lake before adventuring on the rolling roads of the scenic bike course of south Galway and the Burren.
They then ran through woodland track and trails around the Castle Estate to finish at the front door of the Castle.
Saturday morning saw a number of Sprint Plus and Sprint triathlon races kickstart the weekend before athletes took on the Sprint Aquathlon, Aquabike and Duathlon events.
The morning ended with the Super and Starter Sprint triathlons, while in the afternoon all attention shifted to the privately owned lake as swimmers took the water to complete a 5k, 2.5k or 1 mile swim.
On Sunday morning, athletes prepared for the feature event of the morning; the Gauntlet middle distance race, where participants completed a 1.9k swim, 96k bike and 21k run under.
Getting underway at 8am, it was just before lunchtime when Conor Quinn of Active Multisport crossed the finish line in front of the Castle in a time of 4:41:57.
With a little over 7 minutes separating the top three men on the day, it wasn’t long before John Whelan crossed the line in 4:46:50 to claim second place with Stephen Chambers of South Coast TC rounding out the men’s podium in 4:49:03.
In the Women’s race Sian Egerton from Cork TC took the top step of the podium with a time of 5:33:00.
Caroline McLoughlin crossed the line in 5:41:44 to take second place with Nicola Hickey Crowe from Piranha TC finishing third in 5:49:19.
Sunday also saw the popular Olympic distance race take place along with the Standard distance Aquathlon, Aquabike and Duathlon events.
The run only events also took place on Sunday with runners taking on a Marathon, Half Marathon or 10k around the Castle grounds.
The feature events of Sunday afternoon were the hotly contested youth races where young athletes aged 9-15 raced their hearts out swimming, biking and running to the finish line much to the adoration and adulation of their families and friends who cheered them on in front of the castle.
The racing was fast and fun, enjoyed by everyone who witnessed the tenacity and determination of the young athletes who took to the course to race their best race all whilst having fun.
Speaking about the weekend’s events Race Director Brain Adcock said that this was an exceptional weekend in Galway.
“We always look forward to returning to Lough Cutra each year, it kickstarts the race season for us and this year with the 10th anniversary it was a very special weekend,” he said.
“Thank you to everyone who raced, spectated, volunteered, supported and helped to make this weekend such a super success, the sun even shone, all weekend!
“I can’t wait to come back next year and start working towards the next big milestone in the history of racing at Lough Cutra Castle and Estate.”
Full results of all races are available HERE