As I sit here, glass in hand (sports drink only of course…) it feels like an appropriate time to look back on Tyne Triathlon Club’s year.
2019 has been a tumultuous year for the club, having to re-home itself for the second time this decade. This was certainly a difficult time for the club, having lost a lot of members in the first re-home (from Elswick to Fenham Pool), we feared that a second move may kill the club all together. Thankfully, after a short stint at Benfield Pool, we have been able to return to what many of us see as the home of Tyne Triathlon Club at Elswick Pool and are slowly seeing an increase in numbers. We still have a long way to go until returning to the ‘Glory Days’ of the early 2010s, but it feels like the club has a bit of stability once again. I would personally like to thank those, both on the committee, and others, who helped the club navigate these tricky times. Going forwards, we as a club need to band together with everyone doing their bit if we want to ensure the future of the club. I’m sure everyone can agree that we do not have the option to return to the days when David Bell so selflessly managed the club single handedly.
With that said and done, on to some more positive news!
We had some excellent representation from the club across the region this year. First up, and most prestigious was Rob Lambert’s win in the North East MultiSport Championships MV50 Category. Rob is a worthy winner of his title, beating out second place with almost double the points tally. This is testament to how far Rob has come in his short time in multisport, and he certainly hasn’t shied away from racing (a lot) this year!
Angela Mason took second place in the same North East MultiSport Championships in the FV60 category despite having only raced two events this year compared to the category winners three events! Angela, when not competing for podiums spent time bike packing around the Netherlands, which you can read about here.
Ian Elder also deserves a mention for narrowly missing out on third place in the North East Triathlon Championship by only 16.2 points!
In the individual event championships we also had Bella Pearce winning the F45 North East Aquathlon Champion title at the Mouth of the Tyne Aquathlon, along with Steve Addison winning the M25 Middle Distance Champion title at Cleveland Steelman.
One final individual stand out achievement is that of Michael McGrath who qualified (at 70.3 Turkey) for the opportunity to represent Ireland at the ITU Middle Distance Championships in Austria in 2020. “Unfortunately” Michael will be taking on a different challenge and turning down his slot as he is expecting his first child in June!
This is a fantastic achievement by those mentioned above, but also all of those from such a small club that have competed throughout the season. Just making it to the start line is an achievement in itself and worth celebrating.
With that I am going to wish you all a very happy new year! I hope that 2020 brings the club a less dramatic year and that you all achieve the goals I’m sure you will be setting yourselves tomorrow!
I personally will be taking a break from triathlon (at least compared to the last few years) whilst I focus on becoming a dad for the first time with twins expected in early May!
Tyne Triathlon Club Chairman