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Lorraine comes home with gold

Former Newbury AC athlete overcomes heat to clinch victory

Liam Headd

Liam Headd


01635 886629

Lorraine comes home with gold

FORMER Newbury Athletics Club member Lorraine Mitchell won gold for Great Britain in the Age-Graded Duathlon held in Targu Mures, Romania.

The 44-year-old, who is originally from Reading, spent 26 years in Newbury, representing the athletics club for more than five years.

Despite the heat in Romania, which reached a high of 38.5 degrees, Mitchell came out on top and she said: “Hydration was a key focus before the race – there were lots of electrolyte drinks consumed.

“I prepared my race kit the night before, plus the tattoos of my number 432 on my arm and  my bike.”

One of the first things Mitchell had to do was to check the transition set-up, which involves the mount and dismount lines.

“It is key to know the location as you’ll be disqualified if you miss them,” she said.

“I then did some last-minute strides for five minutes to elevate heart rate.”

Mitchell covered the first 5km in a time of 19min 12secs before beginning the cycling section.

She said: “The bike was a hard slog for me as I, for most of the cycle route of 20km, didn’t get to draft another rider or group so had to push on and try and stay focused, despite my legs screaming no.”

After the cycling, Lorraine suffered a small accident when she collided with another competitor.

She said: “Coming off the bike I dismounted and ran in with my bike alongside a Spanish lady who went to rack her bike and took me out.

“I went over her bike and ended up sprawled on the floor with my bike, but I picked myself up and carried on.”

The accident fired her up on the final leg and she powered to victory over the final  2.5km run.

Mitchell said: “After the race I got into a giant paddling pool filled with cold water to ease my sore muscles. 

“That was bliss.”

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