Borderer Iain Veitch sets new triathlon course record in Wales

Borderer Iain Veitch has won the latest Roc Wales triathlon race, setting a new record in the process.

Iain Veitch on the run up Snowdon in Wales (Photo: Eilir Davies-Hughes)
Iain Veitch on the run up Snowdon in Wales (Photo: Eilir Davies-Hughes)

The Peebles 39-year-old completed the course in four hours and 42 minutes.

It consisted of a 1,500m swim in the Irish Sea at Abersoch in Gwynedd, followed by a 31-mile ride through the Snowdonia national park and a run up to the summit of Snowdon, the highest mountain in Wales, then another 31-mile ride back to Abersoch for a one-kilometre run along its beach.

Veitch said: “The course was brilliant – a sea swim in cold but calm waters off the gorgeous beach of Abersoch, an honest rolling bike course and a run up the infamous Watkin path of Wales’s highest mountain. It really has that wow factor.

“Despite the good swimming conditions, I swam poorly and quickly fell to the back of the elite pack and stayed there until coming out of the water.

“The support at the event was brilliant, the noise from supporters giving a real boost regardless of position.

“The bike conditions were almost perfect – no strong winds, dry and a reasonably hilly undulating course from the coast to the main feature of the event, Snowdon.

“Even though the racing was tough, the scenery en route was stunning and also quite intimidating as you could clearly see at all times what lay ahead on the run.

“The run up the mountain was brutal. The Watkin path is often described as the toughest but most scenic path up the mountain and it lived up to that descriptions.

“The terrain is relentlessly steep, reducing everyone to a scramble near the top.

“The views, though, made up for the suffering. They’re jaw-dropping.

“By the time I was back down the mountain, I had taken the lead.

“Despite being halted at a level train crossing and having a very anxious wait for the train to pass and the barrier to raise, I was able to hold onto that to the end of the second bike leg and really enjoy the last one-kilometre run on the beach.”