The Stroke and Stride series started last week and a student doctor cut through the field like a surgeon’s knife to win the women’s race.
Lizzy Haines negotiated the 400 metres swim followed by a two mile run the fastest. Haines, who turned 23 on Saturday, is on a break from studying to be a doctor in England.
Marius Acker was first man home in a time of 18 minutes 46 seconds. Haines finished in 23m 01secs and One Speed – Jasper Mikkelsen and David Walker – was the fastest team in 18m 29s.
Haines will be at the starting line again today at Sunset House in George Town from 5.45pm intending to notch her second win in the series of three. The swim is 600m this time and the run still two miles. Next week the run is the same length but the swim 800m.
She said: ‘Hopefully, I’ll be there to try to win it again, as long as it doesn’t get postponed, which has happened before.
‘I’ll be at all three of them and then fly out for the last race.
‘I started doing triathlons when I was about 16 and before that I swam with the junior national team here.
‘But I have to admit that the past four or five years at university haven’t been particularly productive.’
Haines admits she intended to do the stroke and stride with dad Derek, the president of the rugby association, but at the last minute kicked him to the kerb to go solo.
‘Yes, I’ve been injured for the past six months, not able to run and he wanted me to do the swim so that he could run. But I decided that my leg was okay and I could do my own thing and he was a big disappointed.’
When on island, Haines loves participating in the Cayman Islands Marathon which runs in December. She’s done a couple here and runs marathons when in the UK where she is studying. She intends to do the London Marathon next year and possibly the Cayman if she can afford to fly back.
Dad Derek, sipping a beer as compensation, said: ‘Lizzy got these shin splints and I thought I was going to do the run for her but she tossed me aside like a well worn sea boot and it was probably for the best as she won the female race.
‘It’s good to see her back on track and winning races again because she has been stroke and strike champion before. It’s nice to seeing her here before she goes off to Ecuador for further adventures in her quest to be a doctor.’
Marlene West was second woman home, seventeenth overall. ‘I saw Lizzy ahead of me and tried to catch her but couldn’t. This was my first time running since I had surgery on my knee and it was nice because I didn’t feel any reaction to it but felt like I’d put on 20 pounds.’
West is playing in the Caribbean squash championships at the South Sound club this week. She is Cayman’s top player but because of the surgery two months ago is not 100 per cent. That’s why she’s in the team event, not the individual.
‘Home advantage is always good and the conditions are probably warmer than the others are used to. But it’s hard to say how well we will do because from year to year the teams change.
‘I can only base it from the last championships, in Jamaica two years ago, and that was abandoned because of the passing of Hurricane Dean. But I think the Cayman teams, bother men and women, are very strong and we’ve got a good chance of winning.’