Ironman 70.3 Staffordshire

Mark Buckingham had a frustrating day at his third Ironman 70.3 of the season in Staffordshire where the Pro Men gathered for a 7am start at the Chasewater Country Park. Fog delayed the start by one hour, which potentially caused problems for the 2,000 athletes who faced a tough race lasting a minimum of 4 hours, but significantly more for some of the age-group athletes.

Buckingham had a great swim over the 1.2 miles single loop around the Chasewater Lake emerging from the swim just 2 seconds behind the leader in a time of 23.53. After a swift transition he was first to his bike but was unable to get away having a problem with his back wheel and lost more than three minutes as the other professional athletes moved on to the 56 mile bike course. He eventually set off through the Staffordshire countryside and Cannock Chase area but had to stop on six occasions with mechanical problems. He did manage to complete the course in 2.30.06, around 15 minutes slower than he expected. The run course was a half marathon (13.1 miles), but he knew it was futile trying to catch the race leaders and completed the run in 1.19.41 a total time of 4.18.42 much slower than he had hoped for before the race, finishing a disappointing 10th place behind race winner Elliot Smales (3.59.23), 2nd George Goodwin (4.01.36) and 3rd Bryan McCrystal of Ireland (4.01.46).

Mark’s next scheduled race is as a Guide athlete in the Paratriathlon WTS series in Italy on Saturday 30 June 2018.

Mark Buckingham taking part in Ironman Staffordshire


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