Ailbhe Carroll & Con Doherty are 2018 National Aquathlon Champions

2018 Aquathlon Champs Bull Wall

The unique setting of Bull Island was at its best as the morning dawned bright and clear for the 2018 National Aquathlon Championships. Hosted by Pulse Triathlon Club as part of the Base2Race Aquathlon Festival, athletes were greeted by calm seas and blue skies as they arrived across the wooden bridge joining the island to Clontarf.

The standard distance course consisting of a 1000m sea swim followed by a flat 5km beach run was easily visible for spectators who lined the wall alongside the swim and cheered the athletes on their run from swim exit in to transition. Sea temperatures have been below average for the last number of weeks so it was with held breath that water temperatures were tested on the morning of the race. However, with temperatures coming in at over 12 degrees, the full 1000m swim was able to proceed.

Carroll takes first Senior National Title

In the senior women's race, Ailbhe Carroll looked in strong form to claim her first national title, leading the senior women's race from start to finish. Carroll put in a strong swim of 14.48 to come out of the water in the lead. Niamh Corry, Emma Porter, Esther Bayon and Caitlin McDonald rounded out the top five at this  point.

The run at Bull Island is a different experience for athletes with the 5k out and back route taking place on Dollymount Strand. The sandy run didn't deter Ailbhe, who held on to her lead throughout and finishing in a time of 37:08. The order didn't change post-swim meaning Niamh Corry and Emma Porter held their positions of second and third to podium in the championship in times of 38:10 and 39:07 respectively.

2018 National Aquathlon Senior Womens Podium

Con doherty wins second national championship title of 2018

In the senior men's race, it was the five kilometre run that decided the podium. Filip Kilodziej was first out of the water in 14:18 with Con Doherty emerging 11 seconds later and Patrick Barry a further 20 seconds behind.

Doherty had closed the lead by the 2.5km turnaround and finished with the fastest run split of the day in 32:09. James Walton claimed the silver medal 20 seconds back with Tom McEnery taking the bronze in a time of 33:13. This is Con Doherty's second National Championship gold of 2018, having also won the Duathlon National Championships in Letterkenny earlier in the year.

2018 National Aquathlon Senior Mens Podium

juniors put in a strong showing 

Taking place in the same wave as the standard distance senior race, the junior athletes put in an impressive showing with the top five juniors finishing inside the top 10 fastest times of the day. Notably, Erin McConnell was third overall coming out of the water in a time of 14:39 and was the first female finisher while junior men's winner Sabian Kulczynski completed the course in a time of 33:55, the fourth quickest time of the day.

junior women's results

1.Erin McConnell35:05
2.Orla Walsh35:49
3.Lara McEvoy39.26

junior men's results

1.Sabian Kulczynski33:55
2.Ben Ryan34:24
3.Jonathan Martin34:48

2018 Aquathlon Champs Bull Wall

Full results from the Core Timing website, available here.

Visit the TI Facebook Page for a full gallery of images from the day and to view the live footage from the event.