TRIATHLON: Tom stoked by achievement

Tom Stokes, pictured on Ben Nevis during the City to Summit Triathlon

Tom Stokes, pictured on Ben Nevis during the City to Summit Triathlon

First published in Sport by

WARMINSTER’S Tom Stokes isn’t sure if there’s a race ‘stupid’ enough for him to be able to top the achievement of completing the gruelling City to Summit ironman-distance triathlon.

The 54-year-old, a member of Hot Chilli triathlon club, completed a 2.4 mile swim in the Firth of Forth in Edinburgh, a 112-mile bike ride to Glencoe and a marathon-distance run, including a full ascent and descent of the Ben Nevis mountain, the highest in the British Isles.

Stokes, who suffered a heart attack in 2005, finished 49th overall, with a time of 16:53:59, and was delighted to cross the line after suffering an ankle injury midway through the climb up Ben Nevis.

“It was my first time doing the Ironman distance and I’m not quite sure how I can top that – there are other ridiculously stupid races out there but I don’t think I’ll be doing those,” said Stokes, who works as a postman.

“I definitely ached afterwards. I twisted my ankle about eight miles into the run but my plan was always to walk up Ben Nevis.

“I brought some hiking poles with me and it was a good job that I did because they really helped me get through it.

“About 25 per cent of people dropped out, which is in an indication of just how tough it was.

“I don’t think that I’ll be doing another Ironman – maybe I’ll look into doing the half distance somewhere a bit flatter.”

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