New Records Set In Army Sprint Triathlon

Ieuan Hudson, from 7 Battalion REME, has won this year's Army Sprint Triathlon in record time...

Ieuan Hudson, from 7 Battalion REME, has won this year's Army Sprint Triathlon in record time.

The lance corporal completed the course at Eton Dorney in 55 minutes and 29 seconds, over 30 seconds faster than the previous best.

Meanwhile, Warminster-based civil servant Anna Seymour edged out Corporal Hanna Lyons, from 12th Regiment Royal Artillery, to claim first place in the women's event.

Over 200 competitors took to the water for the opening event of the Army Triathlon racing calendar.

The bumper field included members of the other services, the University Officers Training Corps and civil servants.

Ahead of them was a 750km swim, followed by 20km on the bike and a 5km run.

A mass start in open water can be daunting but once the initial flurry of flailing arms has subsided competitors head out and snake their way around the course.

As the swim came to an end, swim-specialist James Gibson was locked stroke-by-stroke with Alex Bowman and the pack were close behind.

The pair still couldn't be separated as they clambered out of the water and headed towards the first transition.

A smooth, quick change, however, can make all the difference. Ripping off the wetsuit before getting ready for the ride needs to be seamless as seconds can be crucial in the final stages of the race.

By now Mark Matthews had stolen a march on his rivals and sped out onto the bike with a narrow advantage.

The private roads that circumnavigate the rowing lake at Eton Dorney are ideal for cycling at speed and make this venue popular amongst competitors.

This particular race is used by the Army to help select its Inter-Services squad but also to blood newcomers.

Because of the short distances involved it is the perfect event for novices, who are just pleased to complete the course as the elite athletes battle it out for honours.

Despite missing the past two seasons Anna Seymour made a strong return to racing. Using her experience as a Great Britain athlete, the civil servant was one of the favourites to take the women's title.

A sensational cycle from Aaron Gwilliam saw the man from the Army Aviation Centre fly into the lead. He went through the second transition determined to hold onto top spot. Chasing him down, though, was Ieuan Hudson. First place would be decided between these two.

Meanwhile, other prizes were being contested, including the Major and Minor Units titles. There was still plenty to play for.

Used as a venue for the London 2012 Games, there were some almost Olympic performances on display, none more so than eventual winner Hudson.

Not only did he come home first - but in a record time too. Crossing the line in 55.29, he'd taken over 30 seconds off the previous best.

Seymour strode in for first place in the women's race - an impressive 24th overall - with first Army female Hannah Lyons hot on her heels.

Next up it's the Inter-Service Championships, which take place in Cirencester next month.