Andy Ruddy, Jersey First Names Group Team One (swim)

What was the most memorable part of racing the Corporate Mix?

Personally the most memorable part of the Corporate Mix was diving in alongside Alastair Brownlee on day one. Generally I think being part of team that are dependent on your own performance for the overall result gives you an extra kicker to put in your best level of effort. Also the organisation of the event was excellent, and the commentators added to the enjoyment and sense of fun. It was great to race on such a well laid out and professional course. My last triathlon involved running out of the sea, over gravel and into a muddy field to transition so running up the pontoon and onto a soft carpet was pure luxury!

How did you do in your respective leg?

Very happy with my first swim and put in a decent time, perhaps on day 2 I was a bit more complacent and messed up my sighting (by drafting a swimmer who went off course) so ended up being a bit further back that I would have liked. The pursuit starts for the second swims were something different and new to me, it was good to have a couple of targets out in the water to hunt down, something that doesn’t normally happen in regular racing.

What was your favorite part of the entire Super League Jersey weekend?

I enjoyed the whole weekend and camaraderie within the teams. Watching the elite races themselves was a highlight as well as being able to meet the athletes personally in the corporate hospitality events. Having Katie and Richard as part of our team also meant we had a vested interest in the main events. Both are great ambassadors for the sport and took time to speak to the team members over dinner and over the weekend.

How competitive were team members? Was there an internal friendly rivalry between First Names teams?

We didn’t really have any internal rivalry within the First Names teams as they were put together really to try to mix everybody up from the different jurisdictions. Everyone was really supportive of all the First Names taking part, encouraging each individual to do their best regardless of team.

To make things more competitive internally it would have been interesting to perhaps pitch some of our jurisdictions against each other or tiering the teams to include the more competitive athletes in a couple of “fast” teams to push each other. It was clear after the first day that one of our teams had a chance to shoot for the fastest Corporate time which I think gave an added incentive on Day 2 as the team moved up from 3rd to 2nd . This in turn added pressure on the athletes to deliver for the Group so adds a level of seriousness to the event.  To get close to that winning team was a massive achievement given it contained a number of experienced athletes, especially as our team was made up with just 3 participants. It did mean I was able to have a little bit of competitive banter with Comprop over the weekend. Overall I think it is a stronger proposition to include fewer members in the team to give people taking part more time on the course, particularly as we had some travelling over from as far as Hong Kong.  

 

Greig Higgens, Jersey First Names Group Team Three (Swim)

What was the most memorable part of racing the Corporate Mix?

Alistair Brownlee rocking up to the start line to race against us in the swim……….WOW!!

How did you do in your respective leg?

There were some very strong swimmers and this was the first time I had competed at such a short sprint distance, but I think I did OK. Plenty of room for improvement for next year though!

What was your favorite part of the entire Super League Jersey weekend?

Getting to meet and chat with the professionals. All of them are so friendly and engaging with us. At the celebration/prize giving I got to sit with Richard Varga and his wife and they were genuinely interested in finding out more about us and Jersey. They seemed to really enjoy their time here.

How competitive were team members? Was there an internal friendly rivalry between First Names teams?

We were competitive, but supportive of each other. There was more friendly rivalry with the other companies then between the First Names Team. We were one big team.

Overall it was an amazing experience. All the team at SLT from the Macca and Michael to the hospitality team and course directors made us feel so welcome. Together with the army of volunteers and the crowd of spectators, I actually thought I was a profession triathlete for the weekend!

 

Jonny Killey, London First Names Group Team 2 (cycle) 

What was the most memorable part of racing the Corporate Mix?

Racing the same short circuit just hours before the elite athletes, on closed roads with a crowd, a commentator and a stack of photographers lining the course and focussing on a small numbers of competitors was a nice change – in the majority of races/events you don’t get that, you’re poured through a start funnel like cattle (and in a marathon or similar the elites go first, and you struggle on behind them, which means you can’t watch or appreciate that race as you’re embroiled in your own suffering.

How did you do in your respective leg?

Reasonably well I think…

What was your favorite part of the entire Super League Jersey weekend?

Having ringside seats for the Elite race, and the chance to chat to them afterwards was a highlight. Normally elite athletes distance themselves and at larger events the crowds are such that you can’t get close to the action – with Super League that all changes. Combined with a mixed up format that leads to short sharp exciting races (long enough to hold everyone’s attention, with a conveniently timed beer break in between), and I think it’s a format that can do really well.  

How competitive were team members? Was there an internal friendly rivalry between First Names teams?           

I think all of the teams were competitive, which made for some great racing. I don’t think there was any visible rivalry between First Names teams with everyone offering support to all teams, that said, I’m sure there was inwardly (I was certainly gunning to be the fastest on my leg)!

 

Graham Turner, London First Names Group Team 2 (run)

What was the most memorable part of racing the Corporate Mix?

Getting mistaken for one of the Brownlee brothers! (Not sure which one.)

How did you do in your respective leg?

It was tough; short distances are always a lot more painful but the crowd and support were amazing and I got a PB over the mile.  

What was your favorite part of the entire Super League Jersey weekend?

The whole atmosphere of the event and socializing with other First Names.

How competitive were team members? Was there an internal friendly rivalry between First Names teams?

There was certainly a competitive angle but only towards the other corporate teams -- the four First Names' teams really supported one another. With Katie Zaferes coming first on the first and second day it really upped the pressure to deliver a good result on Day 2.

 

Sue Powell, Isle of Man First Names Group Team 4 (swim)

What was the most memorable part of racing the Corporate Mix?

Competing in such a small pool (no pun intended) of talented swimmers was an achievement in itself. The icing on the cake was having Alistair Brownlee standing to my immediate right for the race – I thought they were joking when they said he was joining us!

How did you do in your respective leg?

I tried my hardest given that I had a torn calf muscle injury that I had picked up the week before. The level of those competing was extremely high and I knew I was near the back of the pack but not a million miles away! Again, to be selected to swim at that level was a major achievement in itself and I am extremely grateful to have been given the opportunity.  

What was your favorite part of the entire Super League Jersey weekend?

EVERYTHING – the whole weekend really did have the ‘wow’ factor! The team spirit, meeting colleagues from other jurisdictions (we all got on so well), the welcoming hospitality, watching the pro’s race and of course the sunshine! 

How competitive were team members? Was there an internal friendly rivalry between First Names teams?

No, or if there was it went completely unnoticed! We all pulled together as one and had such a great time. Everyone gave it their all. What more could we have asked for!

 

 

First Names Group

First Names Group