Tuesday, January 15, 2013

1995 Issues 62 - 73

Prize Giving

Our 1994 220 Series; Reebok Duathlon, Swindon, Ironbridge and BUPA Bath Triathlons and finally Longleat Duathlon, was won by Julian Jenkinson and Ali Hollington
Some people rent the Café Royal in London's West End for their annual prize giving ceremonies. We decided to push the boat out too, so for our presentation we went to our local curry house the Raj Doot in downtown Swindon.

Breaking through the throng of adoring fans and bulb popping paparazzi both Alison Hollington and Julian Jenkinson were wined and dined in the manner that has become famous throughout the triathlon world. Sparing no expense, we ordered Tikka Massalas, Jalfrazis and Dansaks, amply washed down with at least two bottles of wine (well there were seven of us).

Then the highlight of the evening, which unfortunately was not covered live by MTV due to some technical hitch, was the presentation of cheques to the value of 220 pounds to our illustrious winners. Like true stars they made their thanks to all and sundry whilst pocketing their cheques (which had been suitably post-dated to some time in the future).

Ever mindful of the economies forced on us in the post-Thatcher nineties we donated the balance of our repast to Ali and Jules who can be seen here leaving the Raj Doot with their doggie bags, obviously looking forward to continuing the meal the next morning.


Sports Illustrated has its Swimsuit Edition so 220 had its Babes Issue:
Five World Champions, one European Champion and three British National Champions.

Sally secretly telephoned the parents of our then current tri stars and asked for some baby photos. As you see they all cooperated :-)

Clockwise from top left: Glenn Cook in the bike park, a red booted Ben Bright, Ali Hollington leaping, recent photo of Karen Smyers, Carol Montgomery at the races, Robin Brew - Student? Simon Lessing - No don't laugh, Richard Hobson without a vest, Spencer Smith in uniform.

Contributors were not immune - Ken, Bellers (but which one?), Ian.
Our kids Jay, Tom and Carrie were volunteered to be volunteers or they got no tea.

I saw the Lions at Longleat

? Nigel Arnold, Paul Robinson, Steve Burton, Richard Allen, ? Karl Sherry, Chris Ray, Phillppe Lie, Iain Hamilton ?
We put on a couple of races at Longleat Safari & Adventure Park, it should have been ideal; mostly traffic free, spectacular countryside, challenging (read, it had a bloody great hill), grand finish next to the House, but it never clicked for me, probably not enough spectators. There was an admission / car parking fee to get in, so that might have deterred some. We had more of a buzz at the airfield duathlons and they were fairly nondescript venues. Longleat was probably too Hi-So for the likes of us ;-)


Multi-tasking: At 220 we also prepared ads for our advertisers.
Malcolm Ball's USP is that his Snugg Wetsuits are made to measure.
So with a few props, Voila!


Richard Allen bones up on the latest BTA drafting regulations.
This year the leading group of elite men rode round in a group. The draft busters tried to sort them out. They couldn't so they were disqualified. Later they were reinstated. Richard Allen kept in the clear then imposed himself on the run, so it ended up all OK - I think.

Tom Davis.
I recall one Swindon race when the bloody transition was about 5km of gravel path. I had some brand new Speedplay cleats which I had fitted onto my shoes only one hour before the start. Well, by the time I mounted the bike I had lost both my cleats! I could say it was your stupid gravel path being too long but alas it wasn't the greatest preparation

And Ladies and Gentlemen, this Golden Oscar would not have been possible without the help and collaboration of my dear friends and associates (pulls out crumpled piece of paper) . . . . .

Kevin Ferris, barber and on the tri-barbers. Trevor Gunning (Gunning geddit :-) and a lean and mean John Lunt finishing Ironbridge.

Kevin Ferris:
Mr 100%, When he wasn't scorching round Ironman races or up and down tracks at Powerman Zoffingen or giving me a haircut he was our saviour innumerable times at 220 races. Someone might call me up on the walkie-talkie: "John! The Fuckin' Fuckers Fucked!", OK, call Kevin. "Kev, The Fucking Fuckers Fucked!". "All right, mate, I'll see to it" Kev would reply. Five minutes later, sledgehammer in hand, I'd see him "Ah, no problem, fixed it" :-)

Trevor Gunning:
Without Trev none of this would have started. He was the founder of triathlon in Swindon. When I came to Swindon he was the owner of Total Fitness THE triathlon shop and also mastermind of the Total Fitness Triathlon Club. He was Mr Bubbly, supremely enthusiastic and with a memory for tedious detail you could only marvel at.

He was a good race route planner and at virtually every 220 race he and I would circle the proposed venue and he would put his finger on what to do and where to put everything. One year we moved the Swindon Triathlon from the lakes to Coate Water Park in the centre of town. Everything was amazing for a race, lake, bike course, run round the park. Only problem, to accept 1,000 we would need to stagger the waves of starters and they would clash exiting the water. Build a bridge? Brilliant! we got our barrier company to build us a scaffolding bridge. Sorted. 

John Lunt:
John began his own stable of races, the biggest and most famous being the Windsor Triathlon started on 1991 and the classic Ballbuster Duathlon (yes, even back then!) all organised under his Human Race banner. Noticing that he had one or two weekends free he volunteered, and became our 220 Transition Tzar. He brought his own cadre of cohorts and they formed the transition team. First there and last leave, they were all reliable and you knew their part of the race would run safely and like clockwork.

This was over 20 years ago and he has gone on to deliver much bigger things; the Manchester 2002 Commonwealth Games Triathlon and the triathlon at the 2012 London Olympic Games being just two of them. John raced every Ironbridge, often setting up transition in the morning, doing the race in the afternoon and breaking it all down in the evening. He managed nine Ironman distance races including Hawaii in '94. He raced all over the world from Brazil to Australia which no doubt helped him at Human Race. You will still see him helping at various events around the country. He can also speak Dutch.

France - USA

This was my thinking: Over the past six years 220 had built a treasure trove of interesting and informative triathlon articles, race reports and photos.  We had excellent contributors who were not only enthusiastic but knew their stuff. One month I counted articles from Doctor Sarah Springman, Doctor Rod Jaques, Doctor Matt Brick, Doctor Julian Jenkinson and Acting Staff Nurse Ken Maclaren; pure gold all of them.

If we started magazines in France and the USA, I reasoned, we could use all these contributors (properly translated into French and American) as a starting point. Then we could find local input from similar French and American experts (which could come back to 220 UK). Also, going to Ironman Hawaii, for instance, the same report would be pertinent to all three and the costs shared.

I tried to do it; there were half a dozen issues published in each country but the project(s) failed. There were a number of reasons. I probably overstretched my ability to watch three magazines. The local people I employed, while experienced in the triathlon business, weren't able to hit the ground running. Perhaps I was expecting too much, too soon. Lastly I had some other problems that took my eye off the ball. So, sad to say they both ceased. Bummer -Tant pis.


Extract from Tom's Race report: 
Annaleah Emmerson (lady in red) received a huge cheer, and a few wolf whistles, when she collected her prize and in the interest of equality, Richard Hobson (who to be fair is also cute as a button) was given a similar reception. Entertainment was expertly provided by triathlete Francesca Harrington who inspired some of the most exotic dancing ever seen in the West Midlands and we all had a barrel of fun.

For all our Ironbridge races we were able to close the High Street to through traffic, so as it was still closed after the race we used to organise a street party, ending in a firework display. We had Tom Davis's brother Mark bring a group  maybe two years? and Francesca Harrington Rocked the Kasbah playing solo guitar another couple of years. If anyone has a picture of Francesca playing her Gibson, please send it, I'll stick it in here.

It wasn't all triathlon in 220.

Ooh! Aah! Canton-a!
220 brings you the sporting news that's at least a month old.
Here's a word from French footballer Eric Cantona:

220: Eric, you had a bit of a 'contre temps' at Crystal Palace?
Eric: Mais, oui.
220: You tried to karate kick one of the fans.
Eric: Zut Alors! Eh?
220: What have the Federation said?
Eric: Oof! Aah! Thwack!
220: But don't you expect to get suspended?
Eric: Chien Mechant!
220: After all, the French Karate Federation expects proper kicking in public.
Eric: Cedez le passage.
220: Will you lose your black belt?
Eric: Attention au carrefour dangerous.
220: I suppose you could join the World Wrestling Federation.
Eric: Honi soit qui mal y pense.
220: Well thanks Eric and 'Bonne Chance'.
Eric: That's all right mate - any time.

Zack Attack - one of the pages shared with the US220.

Jürgen Zack shows us how he improved his T1 to T2 split.

The Battle Continues at BUPA Bath.

Ladies and Gentlemen. Tonight's main event is a three round contest over the Olympic Distance. In the blue corner Current Reigning BUPA Bath Triathlon Men's Champion SIMON LESSING!   . . . . yaaaay! (sound of trumpets etc). And, in the red corner, Undisputed Current ITU World Champion, with his dad Bill ready with the bucket and sponge (he'd just been cleaning his car) SPENCER SMITH!  . . . . yaaaay! (sound of trumpets etc).

and Michellie Jones.

Mark Allen's Bike

220 Streetware

A new line of clothing bearing the 220 imprint; T-shirts, Rugby shirts, Jean jackets, Leather sleeved Baseball jackets, modelled here by Simon, Annie and Tom.

These pieces are now collectors items, unless you are Ken Maclaren who still wears his complete set daily (or uses the shirts to clean his bike).

We could have been another Rapha :-) Although we never got round to the perfume line; Coate Water? Eau de Avon? Essence de Serpentine? - now that would have been a real winner!


1 comment:

  1. Ahh the 220 clothing. Yes John is correct I do still have my selection from the famed range. The clothing must have been well made since others pieces from around that time have long since become bike rags. The houshold got two of the hooded sweatshirts one of which has been claimed by my daughter.


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