Sandman Triathlon 2017 attracts record numbers

Bucking the trend seen at many events, the Always Aim High Sandman Triathlon welcomed record numbers of athletes to Newborough Forest over the weekend

Chief Correspondent
Last updated -

Record Attendance for Spectacular Sandman Triathlon

The seventh edition of the fast, friendly and challenging Sandman Triathlon at Newborough Forest was a record breaking race, with over 1,200 triathletes taking part across the two days.

Concluding Always Aim High’s ‘SUUNTO Adventure Triathlon Series’ which started with the Pedalcover Slateman back in May, the Sandman Triathlon has now firmly cemented its reputation as the perfect season closer to the UK triathlon calendar, and this year’s race featured more exciting action than ever before.



The first day of the Sandman traditionally serves up the shorter distances of the triathlon and 2017 was no exception. Brand new for this year, a sprint duathlon was added alongside the Sprint and Junior races.

Sandman Triathlon 2017
Image​ ​credit:​ ​Always​ ​Aim​ ​High​ ​Events

The Sprint race, popular with novice triathletes but mixed in with Sandman Savage competitors, was won by Sara Willholt – nearly eight minutes ahead of second placed Chloe Vaughan and third placed Rebecca Lineker. The men’s race was a much more closely fought affair with less than two minutes separating the top three. At the finish, GOG Triathlon’s Sam Johnson emerged on top, ahead of series regular Tom Nesham, with Greg Cherry in third.

In the new Duathlon race, Stephen Abbott won the men’s race with a time of 01:14:35, while Hannah Jones of Betsi Runaways took first place in the women’s race with a time of 01:34:22.

Rounding off Saturday’s action was the Junior Triathlon. Over 120 triathlon stars of the future from across North Wales took part in various race distances across a variety of age categories.


A sunny but chilly Newborough Forest greeted competitors on day two, with the all-new Legend kicking off the action as competitors embarked on their 72.4 mile swim, bike and run adventure. After nearly five hours of closely contested racing, it was Daniel Knight of Tri Rivington who took the inaugural honours in the men’s race, ahead of Andy Reid and Callum Lynch.

Sandman Triathlon 2017
Image​ ​credit:​ ​Always​ ​Aim​ ​High​ ​Events

Total Tri Training’s Claire Sutcliffe won the women’s distance of the Legend with close to a twenty minute lead ahead of second place Karen Driver. Third place was taken by Lisel Walker.

In the Full distance of the race, Matthew Nelson took first place ahead of the winner of the Snowman Legend, Llewellyn Holmes. SUUNTO Adventure Triathlon Series regular Alex Foster rounded off the men’s top three. Sarah Harrison of Sheffield Triathlon Club took the top spot in the women’s race, Rebecca Lineker and Helen Teasdale following close behind in second and third respectively.

Sandman Triathlon 2017
Image​ ​credit:​ ​Always​ ​Aim​ ​High​ ​Events

The popular Sandman Savage, a combination of both the Sprint on Saturday and the Full on Sunday, was won by Gareth Bowyer and Rebecca Lineker.

A spokesperson for Always Aim High, organisers of the Sandman Triathlon, said: “Over 1,200 triathletes took part in the 2017 Sandman, making it the best attended since the race was formed in 2011. The brand new Legend 72.4 and Duathlon were particularly well received”.

“We’d like to thank every single one of the competitors across the two days, as well as their supporters and of course all the marshals along the way, our races simply wouldn’t happen without their tireless dedication and enthusiasm”.

“We’d also like to thank Anglesey County Council for supporting the race, as well as the residents of Newborough and the surrounding area, and our race partners”.

Sandman Triathlon 2017
Image​ ​credit:​ ​Always​ ​Aim​ ​High​ ​Events

Full Sandman race results by TDL Event Services, and links to race photography courtesy of Sport Pictures Cymru and Mel Parry Event Photography can be found on the Sandman website here.

For more information on Always Aim High’s 2018 race calendar, visit

Selected Sandman Triathlon Results Below:

2017 Sandman Legend 72.4 results:

Top 3 Men:
1: Daniel Knight 04:52:49
2: Andy Reid 04:57:58
3: Callum Lynch 05:07:38

Top 3 Women:
1: Claire Sutcliffe 05:33:33
2: Karen Driver 05:53:33
3: Lisel Walker 06:05:30

2017 Sandman Full Triathlon results:

Top 3 Men:
1: Matthew Nelson 02:26:11
2: Llewellyn Holmes 02:32:49
3: Alex Foster 02:34:55

Top 3 Women:
1: Sarah Harrison 02:55:22
2: Rebecca Lineker 03:03:57
3: Helen Teasdale 03:06:34

Savage Winners

Men’s: Gareth Bowyer
Women’s: Rebecca Lineker

2017 Sandman Sprint Triathlon results:

Top 3 Men
1: Sam Johnson 01:06:24
2: Tomos Nesham 01:06:55
3: Greg Cherry 01:08:37

Top 3 Women
1: Sara Willholt 01:12:24
2: Chloe Vaughan 01:20:34
3: Rebecca Lineker 01:20:54

2017 Sandman Duathlon results:

Top 3 Men
1: Stephen Abbott 01:14:35
2: Rob Kennard 01:16:59
3. Gwynedd Jones 01:18:12

Top 3 Women
1: Hannah Jones 01:34:22
2: Selina Kirkham 01:46:12
3: Samantha Johns 01:49:06


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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