Lakesman 2018

The Proclaimers may have been willing to walk 100 miles, but they would have been equally impressed with members of the Sittingbourne Striders Running and Triathlon club, several of whom undertook the 300 mile drive to Keswick in the Lake District in order to Swim, Bike, Run their way around the beautiful but rolling national park that played host to the Lakesman Triathlon on Sunday 17th June.

The Lakesman triathlon, now in its third year, is developing a reputation as a friendly but tough event, offering the “full” 140.6 mile distance or, new for 2018, a “half” 70.3 mile option.

Of the nine intrepid Striders, 5 opted for the full distance, and it was Ross Pilcher that emerged from Derwent Water as first Strider following the 2.4 mile swim.  Pilcher setting a time of 1:15:25, was closely followed by Joseph Lovelock (1:16:14), Bradley Clayton (1:18:25), Paul Bowditch (1:24:46) and Gary Deacon (1:36:48).

Lovelock quickly took the lead as he set off on the bike course, which took in 112 miles of some of the most beautiful scenery that the lake district has to offer, but there was little time for sight seeing as a tough headwind and undulating  terrain meant that riders fought hard for every mile.   Pilcher and Bowditch slipped down the rankings as they struggled on the bike, whilst Clayton and Deacon, set off after Lovelock clawing back precious minutes before finally arriving back in Keswick to run the 26.2 mile marathon course.

Claytons feet hit the tarmac first having pulled 17 minutes back on Lovelock during the ride giving him a lead that would ultimately prove too much for Lovelock to close, but Deacon, now on his strongest discipline, took up the challenge of catching his club mates with renewed gusto.  Setting a sub 4 hour marathon time on his way to passing both Lovelock and Clayton before crossing the finish line as first Strider home in a total time of 11:51:28.  Clayton and Lovelock finished close behind with total times of 12:13:48 and 12:28:37 respectively.

Further down the field Bowditch and Pilcher were both glad to be off of their bikes, and were now on the run.  The 5 lap run course allowed runners to share encouragement as they passed one another, and Bowditch a full lap ahead of Pilcher was full of support as the two of them longed for the finish line which they each crossed in times of 12:46:11 and 14:03:46.

As the “full” competitors crossed the line, they were cheered on by those that had already finished having already undertaken the 70.3 “half” event which ran concurrently with the full and utilised parts of the same course.


Glenn Davies, Lorraine Neale, Dannielle Smith and Lisa Hammond had all chosen this option, with the three ladies each having their first foray into long distance triathlon events.

Glenn Davies a seasoned triathlete left the water comfortably in the top 25% of the field, but suffered at the hands of the relentless 56 mile cycle course, before climbing his was back to a solid mid field position during the 13.1 mile run.  Davies crossed the line in a respectable 5:56:11 which was good enough for 7th in his age group.   Of the ladies it was Neale who’s early season training paid off, as she  took the crown as first female Strider to cross the line in a fantastic 7:09:46, followed by Smith (7:26:34) and Hammond (7:43:47).  Hammond, competing in her first ever triathlon went on to say “I’m hooked, which is a good thing as I’ve already signed up for another event next week”!

White Oak Tri 2018

Two striders donned their trisuits for the White Oak Triathlon sprint distance on Sunday, 10 June.

Katy Jackson swam 400m, biked 22km and ran 5km in 1.32.09. She finished several minutes ahead of team-mate Carli Deacon, who was doing her first tri. Her finish time was 1.35.31.

Ocean Lake Aquathon 2 2018

2 Striders took part in the 2nd of the seasons Aquathons to be held at Leybourne Lakes. Consisting of a 750m swim followed by a 5k run around the lake James Reeves completed the race in 36.21 placing him 3rd overall out of the 24 entrants. Lorraine Neale finished in 46.50 placing her 19th overall. A good warm up to the half triathlon and full triathlon which the 2 striders will be taking on in the next few weeks!
Lorraine Neale & James Reeves:

Cranbrook Triathlon 2018

Hailed as one of the best rural tris Martin Clark took part in the Cranbrook Sprint Tri consisting of a 300m pool swim, a 20k bike ride and a 5k run. Heading off from the Weald Sports Centre in Cranbrook he completed the tri in 1.12 placing him in the top 3 in his age group.

Oceanlake Aquathlon May 2018

Two striders battled it out in the midweek aquathlon held at Leybourne Lakes on Wednesday, 9 May. Matt Nunn and Neil Hacon were amongst the 26 entries competing in the 750m swim which was followed by a 5km run.

Matt finished the swim in 12.04 minutes with Neil coming out the water in 14.28. Both had relatively swift transitions before taking to the run course.

Neil made up much of the lost swim time on the run finishing the 5km in 20.30 however Matt was able to hold him off with a 22.07. Matt finished in 7th in 35.06 and Neil 8th in 36.10.

After the event Matt said: “Overall I’m happy with the result as I didn’t think the swim had gone particularly well. It’s a solid enough start to the tri season and something to build on.”

Pilgrims Hospice Charity Bike Ride 2018

A number of the Sittingbourne Striders Tri squad took part in a charity bike ride in aid of the Pilgrims Hospice. Starting in Canterbury the riders joined around 1200 cyclists to ride 45, 75 or 100-miles for the good cause.

In addition to supporting the Pilgrims Hospice Gina Woodfine rode the sportive to raise money for the Epilepsy Society. The keen multi-sporter completed the 45-mile course, despite being hindered by a knee injury. In doing so she raised £490 for the worthy cause. She was inspired by her daughter 20-year-old Zoe Bartlett who has epilepsy.

Riders completing 100 Miles
Ross Pilcher
Lisa Hammond
Bradley Clayton
Elliot Stokes
Steve Prince

Riders completing 75 Miles
Glenn Robert Davies
Daniel Edmondson
Danielle Smith
Graham Thomas
Andrew Thomas
Roy Shears
Steve Bradshaw
Jeff Fox
Paul Williams
Paul Bowditch
Lucy Hewett

Riders completing 45 Miles
Gary Spicer
Gina Woodfine

Swimathon 2018

Katy Jackson took part in Swimathon, the world’s biggest fundraising swim, which for the last 31 years has been encouraging swimmers across the UK to swim a distance challenge and raise money for two causes Cancer Research UK and Marie Curie. Katy Jackson took on the ultimate Swimathon challenge completing the 5k distance which is 200 lengths of a 25m pool which she did in 1hr 47m.

Milton Creek Duathlon

Milton Creek Duathlon : Sunday 29th October

3 Striders took part in the Go Tri Swale Tri Club Duathlon with the following results:

Sarah Strachan 16th/28 (1hr 11min 9sec)
Gordon Wallace 23rd/28 (1hr 14min 4sec)
Barbara Collier 25th/28 (1hr 16min 3sec)

Left to right: Barbara Collier; Sarah Strachan; Gordon Wallace:


Cyclopark Relay Duathlon

Cyclopark Relay Duathlon : Sunday 22nd October

Striders were out in force on a windy sunny October morning @ Gravesend’s Cyclopark. 11 teams of 3 entered the event which was a great opportunity for many from the club to have their first try at a multi disciplined event on a traffic free course.

cyclopark relay duathlon

‘The Glory Hunters’ were the first Striders team home in a time of 2.39.35 placing them 7th out 19 mixed teams
Glenn Davies
Jen Coleman
Lee Simpson

‘170 Not Out’ team were next home in 2.46.31 placing them 9th mixed team
Ian Gower
Steve Shirmplin
Karen Seymour

‘The Striders’ team 2.56.18 – 13th mixed team
Paul Bowditch
Lucy Hewett
Danielle Smith

‘Team Cake’ team 3.02.57 – 14th mixed team
Ross Pilcher
Sophie Byrne
Debbie Usher

‘KMJ’ team 3.05.18 – 16th mixed team
Matthew Pearce
Kerry Pearce
Jody Coxon

‘Max Bodimeade’ team 3.05.42 – 13th mens team out of 14 mens teams
Sam Wilders
John Nunes
Andrew Thomas

‘2 Foxes and a Hound’ team 3.06.36 – 18th mixed team
Gary Spicer
Gina Woodfine
Sarah Strachan

‘Wonder Women’ 3.06.41 – 4th womens team out of 7 womens teams
Lisa Hammond
Nicola Garner
Katy Jackson

‘ARD’ 3.09.15 – 14th mens team
Darren Billing
Andrew Howes
Roy Shears

‘Canicross Striders Ladies’ – 3.30.58 – 7th womens team
Jo Bing
Barbara Collier
Shelly Coker

‘Team Tri Jedi’ – 3.33.37 – 19th mixed team
Kevin Eastop
Claire Eastop
Karen Longley

London to Brighton Off Road Bike Ride 2017

London to Brighton Off Road Bike Ride: Sunday 24th September

2 Striders took part in the UK’s biggest charity off-road ride. Going for 10 years the route was varied including tough climbs, technical descents, rocky surfaces and dirt trails! Well done Sarah Louise Strachan and Christopher Rogers for completing this tough challenge!