Thousands Turn Out for Challenge Galway

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Galway hosted a festival of triathlon and music over the weekend as thousands of people turned out to watch and take part part in the inaugural Challenge Galway.

According to organiser estimates, close to 25,000 people descended on Galway city throughout the course of the weekend which combined triathlon racing and a festival of music in the docks in Galway.

A Festival of Triathlon

The festival of triathlon began on Saturday when thousands took to the roads and the waters in Galway to battle it out over the three disciplines on Sprint, Olympic, Try-­a-­Tri a Tri distances, with Sunday showcasing both the Full and Half Iron distance events.

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Thornton Best of the Irish

Challenge Galway welcomed an extraordinary field of international and national Pro athletes taking part. Galway man Kevin Thornton came home 4th in a time of 3:58:47. The race was won by British athletes taking home first and second positions; David McNamee in a time of 3:51:47 with Joe Skipper home in second place in a time of 3:55:11, third was New Zealander Dylan McNeice in a time of 3:56:50.

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A very strong women’s field saw Emma Bilham take home gold in a time of 4:16:35 closely followed by Lucy Gossage in a time of 4:22:09 and Laura Siddall came in third in 4:27:41.

Event organiser Liam Heavin said he was very pleased with how Challenge Galway went in its first year.

"It was a massive undertaking which could not have been possible without a very strong team on the ground and major support from Galway City and County Council, Failte Ireland and the Gardai. The expo village and festival element was so well received by both athletes and people attending Challenge Galway. We are hoping that our first year will give merit to this being an annual event for Galway and the West."

Full race results are available on challenge­galway.eu.

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PRO FEMALE RESULTS: Challenge-Galway 2016

Emma Bilham CHE 4:16:35.2 1

Lucy Gossage GBR 4:22:09.6 2

Laura Siddall GBR 4:27:41.9 3

Anne Jensen DEN 4:48:35.3 4

PRO MALE RESULTS: Challenge-Galway 2016

David McNamee GBR 3:51:47.4 1

Joe Skipper GBR 3:55:11.8 2

Dylan McNeice NZL 3:56:50.6 3

Kevin Thornton IRL 3:58:47.6 4

Jens Frommhold DEU 4:01:56.0 5