Speedy students are not ‘Chilly’ at the BUCS Duathlon Championships

There was high quality late season action yesterday at the BUCS Duathlon Championships as the swiftest multisport students descended on Castle Combe racing circuit, where less than a second decided the winning women's team

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VERY close and quality racing at Castle Combe Racing Circuit


Women’s BUCS Team Championship decided by less than one second

I’ve said it many times on the pages of TRI247 over the years. When it comes to domestic racing, few – if any – races can compare in terms of strength-in-depth to what we consistently see during the season at the various BUCS (British Universities and Colleges Sport) Championships. Another of example of this was provided yesterday at the Chilly Duathlon organised by DB Max Events, which hosted the 2018 BUCS Duathlon Championships.

The men’s championship was won this year by Leon Chevalier (University of Bath), who was the 20-24 ETU European Duathlon Championship winner last year in Soria, where he was also the fastest overall Age-Group athlete. He was able to pull away from Paul Kerr (University of Edinburgh) on the second run to take the BUCS Gold.

The women’s race saw another quality winner, courtesy of Kate Waugh (University of Leeds). Kate is a former World Junior Duathlon Silver medallist (2016) and finished on the podium at the World Junior Triathlon Championships in both 2017 (Silver) and 2018 (Bronze). She was able to hold off the fast finishing Bronwen Owen (Leeds Beckett University) on the second run to take the title.

The Team awards were VERY close. It was double Gold for Leon as the University of Bath took the men’s title by 20 seconds over Leeds Beckett. For the women however, Leeds Beckett would take the win by LESS THAN HALF A SECOND (!) over University of Leeds. The organisers must have been very grateful for chip timing yesterday to decide that one, the aggregate times of their fastest three athletes being so very close.

View from the event

I contacted Mike Clyne, one of the commentators at yesterday’s race for his thoughts:

“Yes the Women’s BUCS Team results were separated by just 0.41seconds in total across three athletes between first and second team. Amazing!

“The lists of past winners of the BUCS Duathlon Championships show a lot of names of individuals who have gone on to great heights.

YearMale winnerFemale winner
2018Leon Chevalier (University of Bath) 41:45Kate Waugh (University of Leeds) 47:15
2017Jack Willis (University of Leeds) 41:28Sophia Saller (Oxford University) 47:23
2016Richard Horton (Loughborough University) 41:40Philippa Woolven (University of Birmingham) 47:15
2015Sam Dickinson (University of Leeds) 42:03Molly Patch (University of Birningham) 49:25
2014Liam Lloyd (University of Leeds) 42:22Sophia Saller (Oxford University) 48:27
2013Richard Horton (Loughborough University) 42:26Charlotte Taylor (University of Warwick) 48:31
2012Oliver Mott (Cardiff Metropolitan University) 41:48Sophia Saller (Oxford University) 48:57
2011Luke Watson (Loughborough University) 43:22Lois Rosindale (Leeds Metropolitan University) 48:07
2010Mark Threlfall (Loughborough University) 43:31Lois Rosindale (Leeds Metropolitan University) 49:30
2009Thomas Bishop (University of Leeds) 44:18Non Stanford (University of Birmingham) 50:56
2008Oliver Mott (University of Bristol) 43:09Victoria Graves (University of Birmingham) 52:13
2007Aaron Harris (University of Bath) 42:54Katy Moore (Oxford University) 52:20

“When you look at the results for BUCS you will see the amazing strength and depth of the student population For example in the men’s race, just 63 seconds separated first from seventh place! There are clearly some real powerhouses among the Universities. You would usually expect to see Loughborough in the mix but both Leeds University and Leeds Beckett University featured heavily at the sharp end. Clearly the influence and training opportunities of top level athletes and coaches in that city are making a difference. Similarly, Bath and Birmingham have a large range of elite performance squads for several sports and I do wonder whether this seeps into the sporting life as a whole.

BUCS Duathlon Championships 2018
Mike Clyne with men’s winner, Leon Chevalier

“More than 550 athletes took part in the BUCS race – some seats of learning fielded more than 50 athletes whereas there were some with only one representative. The atmosphere was lively, fun and supportive for all levels of participants driven by the teams themselves.  Many had travelled a long way to be a part of this event demonstrating a commitment and passion to be admired.

“The future of our sport is looking excellent!”

BUCS Duathlon Championship at ‘The Chilly Duathlon’, Castle Combe
Sunday 19th November 2018: 
2-miles | 10-miles | 2-miles



1st – Kate Waugh (University of Leeds) – 47:15
2nd – Bronwen Owen (Leeds Beckett University) – 47:28
3rd – Sophia Green (University of Stirling) – 48:09
4th – Erica Byram (Leeds Beckett University) – 48:36
5th – Sophie Alden (Loughborough University) – 49:00


1st – Leon Chevalier (University of Bath) – 41:45
2nd – Paul Kerr (University of Edinburgh) – 42:00
3rd – Jake Callis (Leeds Beckett University) – 42:12
4th – Anthony Haynes (St Mary’s University) – 42:14
5th – Matthew Nelson (University of Hull) – 42:31

Women’s Team

1st – Leeds Beckett University – 2:26:46.3 (Bronwen Owen, Erica Byram, Lucy Byram)
2nd – University of Leeds – 2:26:46.8 (Kate Waugh, Jessica Fullagar, Natasha Sinha)
3rd – Loughborough University – 2:30:27

Men’s Team

1st – University of Bath – 2:09:11
2nd – Leeds Beckett University – 2:09:31
3rd – Loughborough University – 2:10:04

John Levison
Written by
John Levison
TRI247's Chief Correspondent, John has been involved in triathlon for well over 30 years, 15 of those writing on these pages, whilst he can also be found commentating for events across the UK.
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