Cork Triathlon Club has a long history, the club in it’s current form is in existence and celebrates it’s 20th year this year, 2019. There was a former incarnation of CTC prior to 1999, but that had disbanded around the mid90’s.
The rebirth started back In November 1998, where a group of three, John O’Shaughnessy, John Guirey & his son Ronan met in the Silversprings Hotel in Cork to assess interest in forming a triathlon club in the city. They were committed and determined, so early the following year, Jan 2019, the club Cork Triathlon Club was formed and registered. Fast forward and 20 years later the club has grown from strength to strength. John continues to be an active, enthuastic member of the club, on the club committee, captures great photography of the club in action and continues racing triathlons locally and abroad.
The very first club Race
……hosted by the newly formed club was the Irish Sprint Distance Duathlon Championship, held close to the city in Riverstick, Co. Cork. That race was won by Mark McDowell from Ulster, Ronan Guirey of Cork was second with Trevor Woods 3rd. Jason Nicholl CTC won the junior race and the late Caroline Kearney won the women’s race.
The first Triathlon
…. .sponsored by the club was King of the Hill (KotH) in Kinsale, which is still a club race, it was the first Irish triathlon to have on-line entry thanks to CTC member Sean Nolan. The KotH race is possibly one of the tougher sprint races on the race calendar, it was aptly named after the particularly hilly run from the dock beach. If you are a budding triathlete keen to tackle your first triathlon, KotH makes an awesome race to conquer as your first! It’s a fantastic event, the swim is in the lovely sheltered Dock Beach, the amazing cycle features some rolling hills, but such breathtaking views, make sure to look up and out for the surfers on Garretstown beach and again to see if the Mother Mary statue is moving as you spin up out of Ballinspittle! The run will finish you off nicely, dig deep, smile and enjoy the camradare of your club mates and friends cheering you on, the finish straight is fast and furious, embrace gravity!
The Clubs Second Race
The concept came about while John O’Shaughnessy & Paddy Quinlan were cycling over the Healy pass & Caha Pass. Originally, Glengarrif was set to be the starting point, but luckily Kenmare became its home. So in 2003, the iconic Lost Sheep race was born! Since it’s inception, it’s gained a reputation nationally and internationally as one of the toughest middle distance races, with 220Triathlon magazine ranking it 6th toughest middle distance race around the globe. It’s a race that instills fear into even the strongest competitor, but year after year, they come back, with the 400 places selling out in minutes!
The Lost Sheep is run over some of the most spectacular scenery in Ireland, with a swim in the beautiful Kenmare Bay, a tough and challenging cycle over the Cat 1 climbs of the Healy Pass and the Caha Pass and one of the toughest half-marathon courses possible. Winners of this race (male and female) certainly deserve the €1000 first place prize money. Aside from the race, it’s a fantastic weekend in Kenmare, much of the club migrates there for the weekend, to help with stewarding the event and most importantly celebrate the end of the triathlon season!
Club Coaches & Development
As our club progresses, there’s always need for home grown club leads and club coaches, the club supports interested members to attend the TI coaching programme and in addition to our external coaches, we have a fantastic crew of club coaches giving back to the club by actively working on the group sessions as well as presenting information across seminars and workshops, kudos guys!
Over the years Cork Tri has produced a number of outstanding triathletes and in terms of the national series roundup has produced stellar results in 2018, with Donnach Kiely performing strongly throughout the season to claim first place overall while Amy O’Keeffe stormed through to third place for the ladies. Brendan O’Neill was 2nd in his age group with Tomas Kenefick and Lorna Wolfe both third in their age groups. Meanwhile, in the Club series, Cork Tri scooped 3rd place in the Male & Female categories and 2nd in the Mixed category (top 6 in each, listed below), rounding off a very successful National series campaign for 2018.
This is our club
The club has about 200 members, with females making up one third of the club profile. New members are always welcome and the club caters for all abilities. Joining is easy and done through Triathlon Ireland (TI). There’s something for everyone within Cork Tri, from the beginner with an eye on completing their first triathlon to the ambitious athlete looking for success at a national or international level. The cost to join the club is €60 (members must also join TI), members actively participating club run events get a return of multiples of the membership fee in subsidies for training and coaching as well as free organised sessions. There is also a great social element to the club with a very active social committee organising social/training weekends away, activities around designated club “away” races and local social events around Cork. There’s a wealth of experience within the club, a fantastic cohesion between clubmates and of course, there might be a little competitive rivalry on occasion!