Round 4 of the 2008/9 series saw the biggest ever field for an HTC biathlon with 29 starters in the main race and 4 in the kids race.
It meant tremendous racing across the whole field with battles going on for nearly every position.
The winner of the last two kids races, Hannah Haldenby, stepped up to the main race this round, leaving Elly Gallagher to out run Lachlan Basten to be the first of the children home after the two dead-heated in the pool.
Not too far further back was Justin Ford and also Alistair Watts who did a 100m swim.
Well done to all the kids, keep up the great work and keep having heaps of fun!
The main race was an absolute cracker!
After two rounds in a row with the same top 3 something had to give, and it did, in the shape of our latest representative at the Ironman World Championships in Hawaii, Brad Eastwood.
The winner of the last two rounds, Jared, kept up his fantastic form, again recording the fastest swim split and taking a 15 second lead over Brad into the run.
But Brad gradually pulled the lead back overtaking Jared in the last kilometre to pip him at the line to record a 1 second win.
The race for third was just as good. Wally beat Martin out of the water by 30 seconds and had his typical lightning fast transition.
Like Brad, Martin gradually made inroads into Wally's lead but unlike Brad couldn't quite catch him, Wally taking third by 12 seconds.
That was Wally's 4th podium from 4 starts this series (1 win & 3 3rds). It was also Jared's 3rd podium from 3 starts (2 wins & 1 2nd).
Well done guys, keep up that consistency.
Other battles in the field included Tony overcoming a deficit of more than 90 seconds out of the water to beat John Boakes home by just 2 seconds for 6th; and Josh battling a similar margin in attempting to chase down Ben Basten but falling short by just 7 seconds.
Well done to Marion for taking the fastest female swim split and overall female victory and also to Hannah for recording the fastest (and only top 10 overall) female run split to be third female home.
Series Points: Of our record 29 starters, we had 17 members - 3 racing for the first time as members and 14 with handicaps to improve upon.
The big winners were the two youngsters that battled it out for 18th, Ben B and Josh.
Ben beat his handicap time by a whopping 9.67% to take the maximum 30 points with Josh improving by almost 3.5% to take the second placed 28 points.
Others to beat their handicap were Sam, Lisa, Martin, Wally and John B.
Wally's 4th podium from 4 starts, all in impressively consistent times, sees him extend his lead at the top of the standings to 16 points.
Tony has moved into second with 76 points and holds a single point lead over Adrian with Nev a further 3 points back.
Lisa is the leading female on 64 points and heads a log-jam with Michael and Josh both on 63 points and then Cath on 61 points.
Claire, the only member to score volunteer points at all four rounds, sits in 20th out of the 35 members to score points and if she keeps up that record could end up in the top 15 or better by the end of the season.
Full points standings and list of current handicap times is here.
Well done to everyone especially all newcomers and all the kids.
Thanks to all the volunteers for helping out with refreshments, timing, and keeping everyone safe out on the run course.
Here are the full results.