Defending champion Stuart Hayes returns to this year’s Blenheim Triathlon looking to make it three-in-a-row, fighting off the challenge of 2006 World Champion and four time British National Champion Tim Don this Sunday 6 June 2010.
The two triathlon heavyweights will go head-to-head alongside 5,500 competitors comprising of elite athletes, first timers and relay teams. The UK’s second largest Triathlon, set in the stunning surroundings of Blenheim Palace, is estimating around 15,000 spectators this weekend for the swim, bike and run event.
London-based Hayes admits he is well aware of the threat posed by Don, commenting: “Blenheim is my first race on the 2010 British Triathlon Super Series and I’m really keen to start with a win.
“Tim is a world class athlete and currently ranked ahead of me, so I will have to be at the top of my game to beat him.
“My hope is to continue my recent good form as I look to build towards my ultimate dream of gold at London 2012.”
This year will see the event prize money stand at £6,000, divided between male and female elite competitors, with Channel 4 Television broadcasting the race on the 27 June at 8.30am.
The event also sees a remarkable return to the triathlon fraternity for former Great Britain competitor, Marc Jenkins, who had to take a break from the sport in 2005 due to Deep Vein Thrombosis (DVT) and pulmonary embolisms. The 33-year-old Welshman is also remembered for his heroic efforts at the 2004 Athens Olympic Games where he suffered an almost race-ending crash on the bike. To ensure a finish he carried his bicycle two kilometres in order to reach the running stage of the race. He was treated to a hero’s welcome as he crossed the line in last place.
Other stars to look out for include Iwan Thomas, the current 400m British record holder and former Olympic, European and Commonwealth games champion, who is competing in his first ever triathlon.
Additionally, The Sun newspaper has entered its own team led by the editor of the Bizarre showbiz column, Gordon Smart. The team is building towards the Olympic distance at the London Triathlon in August where they will be accompanied by Radio 1 DJ and TV presenter, Vernon Kay.
2010 is an exciting time for triathlon and Blenheim, with the Oxfordshire event selected to form part of the British Triathlon Super Series, launched in 2009.
Following the success of last year’s Kid’s Zone, Active Kids will return with their fun-filled children’s activity area. Cheer your child on to mini triathlon glory or simply watch them enjoying the giant games, penalty shoot out and face painting on offer. Competitions for children over three years old run alongside the day’s main events, allowing the whole family to enjoy a great day out while getting fit and healthy. More information on kids’ race times is available at www.activekids.biz/blenheim-triathlon. Places can be booked in advance.
This year’s official charity partner, Leukemia & Lymphoma Research, will again be ever present with their Banana Army Triathlon Team attempting to raise thousands of pounds for the national charity. For further information about the Blenheim Triathlon, visit: www.theblenheimtriathlon.com