Athletes who like a serious challenge travelled to the childhood home of Anne Boleyn, Hever Castle to enjoy a day filled of swim bike and run.
Swimmers enjoyed exclusive access to the Hever Castle lake from the stunning Loggia with its Nymph’s Fountain, inspired by the Trevi Fountain in Rome. Cyclists endured undulating routes through Ashdown Forest and the South Downs which are certainly not for the faint hearted. Runners were rewarded with courses through the beautiful castle grounds, surrounding woodland and countryside.
Hever Castle is an epic place to race, made even more special by loud and loyal supporters and marshals dotted around the course.
The day kicked off before sunrise with dedicated crew members arriving on site from 4am, ready to welcome the first competitors from 5am.
The day was bookended by The Bastion, whose athletes were first in the water at 6am to complete their 3.8K swim and last over the line as late as 11.20pm having completed a 180.2K cycle followed by a marathon run.
The 50 miler runners also started their race with a stunning sunrise from Eastbourne Pier. From here they made their epic journey across the beautiful, hilly South Downs and Ashdown Forest before arriving back at Hever Castle.
These are both life-defining races which earn the utmost respect from all.
All other competitors were set off by 10.30am to ensure they could complete their Herculean distances before nightfall.
With 10K, 3.8K and 1.9K swimmers, Marathon and Half Marathon runners, Duathletes, Aquabikers and Aquathlon athletes all off on their courses, there was an incredible buzz in the event village as spectators, marshals and partners cheered on their competitors.
Notable performances came from…
Speaking about the event Race Director Brian Adcock said “This July event is exactly as it is billed for the athletes, their spectators, our partners and our crew – a Festival of Endurance. With early wake ups and epic late finish times, we are so grateful for the incredible effort everyone puts into this event. It truly is an event of dedication and commitment to racing. The Main Stage music kept everyone’s energy levels up throughout the day, and a special mention must go to the fantastic military flypast by Hurricanes and the voices of Rock Choir lending a hand to raise even more money for our charity partner, Macmillan Cancer Support. We’re proud that this event continues to be a festival of Swim, Bike, Run for those up for a serious challenge. Long may that continue!”
The spectacular setting of the castle and lake at Hever Castle provided the perfect backdrop for a superb Sunday of endurance racing. The fabulous weather and festival atmosphere made it a fantastic day out in Kent. We hope to see you next year!
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