UK Ultimate Triathlon June 2018

What a fantastic weekend for the club, bringing together general members, swim trainers, polo players and swimming lesson kids and parents. ‘Gazebo Parogon’ was at the heart of the event and could not be missed by anyone and the camaraderie, support and friendship from all was fantastic. I for one will never forget the noise and support every time I passed a club member or supporter and the noise as each competitor came down the finishing lane was enough to bring a tear to the eye of this man as I finished my event!

Remember it’s the members that make the club – and this weekend we showed what a great club we are!

UK Ultimate Kids Triathlon

Saturday June 2nd saw 11 kids registered under the Parogon name take on the challenge of swim, bike, run at Alderford Lakes in Whitchurch.

It has to be said that they were all fantastic, taking to the lake and swimming fantastically, they were a credit to themselves and the club with many overtaking those who started before them. The race director was even heard to liken some of our swimmers to Olympians past and present!!

Then it was onto the bike, a tough grass course with some undulations pushed the kids to the max, completing their designated number of laps they then hit the run and this is when the realisation of the challenge hit home.

Poor Sophie missed one lap and then promptly threw up, now that is hard core and she had no issues hitting the BBQ later in the day!! Norika really dug in on the run with dad Adam running alongside and she did fantastically to finish and should be very proud of herself. Spencer was second in his age group, again a fantastic achievement. Team Deakes Junior competing for the first time were superb completing the course with smiles son their faces and the seasoned athletes, Amelia, Evie and Maisie lapped it all up! Zac was our first finisher and unfortunately I missed him as mine were starting their swim…

The phrase of the day was, ‘much better than Trentham!’ The associated support crew was loud, vociferous, and enthusiastic – a sign of things to come on Sunday!!

Well done all a great day and the future of the club looks to be in strong hands!

To see the results follow this link:


UK Ultimate Half Triathlon

Now the kids had set the bar high for the adults on the Sunday and they duly obliged!

First off it was the Half Ironman – 70.3 miles in total comprising of, 1.2 mile swim, 56 mile bike and a half marathon to finish. With the clear blue sky’s overhead and the predicted high temperatures it was going to be a long day for our competitors: Harry Belfield, Ed Cross, Neil Oliver, Olly Tarpey, Ian Cartwright and ex club stalwart and polo player Ian Ross.

We started off by being paraded down the finishing lane behind a Union Jack with music blaring being duly cheered by the assembled relatives and supporters – that got the adrenaline going and calmed any pre race nerves. It was then into the fantastic lake, clear and warm at 21 degrees for our two lap swim with a small jog between each lap. First out was Harry followed by, and in the top 10, the 2 Ian’s, who somehow manged to stay together for the whole swim – the only way through the field for me from then on was backwards!!! I had peaked on my best discipline!!! Olly was not far behind and came into transition just as I was leaving. All swimmers, as with the kids, posted great times setting themselves up for the rest of the race.

We then headed out on the bikes for our two lap 56 mile ride, the course headed to Malpas, out to Bangor on Dee and back to Whitchurch – undulating but nothing too challenging with good areas to recover and conserve energy for the run that was to come. Food and drink was the order of the day on the bike and the order of team Parogon was shaken up, Harry, Neil, Ed, Ian R, Olly, Ian C – but would that hold through the run!

So we now hit the half marathon with temperatures hitting 26 degrees on the road section it was going to be tough. A three lap run, round the lake and down the lane with feed stations every couple of miles – much needed. Personally I hated the first 5km but then got into my stride, walking through each feed station taking on water and also chucking it over my head to cool down, Olly tied up on the run and did fantastically well to finish. The noise from the rest of team Parogon whenever we past them was suburb and really kept us going as did the multi-lap as we kept passing each other shouting words on encouragement, high fiving and keeping each other going. I also found the other competitors to be fantastic, it almost becomes a self-help group getting each other to the end…

So how did it all pan out:

Harry – an unbelievable 4th overall in a time of 4 hours 32 mins

Ed – 42 and second in age group in 5 hours 16 minutes

Ian R – 54th in 5 hours 22 minutes

Neil – 73rd in 5 hours 35 minutes

Then our first timers at this distance:

Ian C – 103rd in 5 hours 55 minutes

Olly – a courageous 131st in 6 hours and 10 minutes

216 starters

Whilst we were racing – so forgive me for the slight lack of detail – we had multiple competitors across other races.

UK Ultimate Sprint

Christina completed the sprint, 500m swim, 12 mile bike and 3 mile run, the longest race she has done as an individual and she did fantastically coming in as the 8th female out of 27 starters. Having put in a strong swim, she flew the bike and put in a steady, hot run to finish in 1 hour and 34 minutes. Again another fantastic achievement and she has even said she will race that distance again!

UK Ultimate Quarter

Tom ‘The Beast’ Davies took on the ¼ just under the Olympic Distance – 0.6 mile swim, 28 mile bike and a 6.2 mile run. No mean feat as Tom has only ever done one other event. As with all the club members Tom put in a strong swim exiting the water in 5th place, and he then hit the bike. Having only started riding this year he did a strong ride and then a good run posting 1 hour for the 10k. As with all of us Tom suffered with the heat and I was so pleased to be able to sweaty high five him a number of times on the run – it was that club spirit that got us all through….. Tom finished in a time of 3 hours and 3 minutes – again another wicked performance in club colours!



We also had three relay teams competing and a report is on its way to me for those to send out – but lets just say for now. Three teams, three trophies!!!!!


Christmas & Beyond


The Annual General Meeting of the club will take place at 7pm on Wednesday 10th January at 11 Parkway ST4 8AJ.

All welcome.

Christmas Opening

Sunday 24th Coached Swimming 9am – 10am – possibly followed by brunch somewhere

Tuesday 26th – Closed

Thursday 28th – Open 6 – 7.30pm No Junior Water Polo

Saturday 30th – Coached swimming 8.30 am – 9.30 am, general swimming until 10 am only

Sunday 31st – closed

Tuesday 2nd – open as normal.

Lessons – last one Sunday 17th December, starting back on Sunday 7th.

All other days we are open as normal.

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Old Boys Polo & Club Social

On Sunday 14th January we have the annual Old boys Water Polo followed by a social event at a venue TBC. We have the pool from 2 until 5 and then the social after. We would like as many people as possible to attend, past players for the game and club members to be at the game or join us for the social as we would like to use this evening to also thank and make a presentation to Jill in recognition of her service to the club.

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Can you please sign up for the event here so that we can confirm numbers for the food. We will almost certainly ask for a contribution to the food costs that will be confirmed once we know numbers and the venue is confirmed. For now put it in your diary’s……

Updated Events Calendar

The latest Events Calendar is linked below by clicking on the logo, with the revised dates for the AGM & Polo amended, a number of the external events have now got fixed dates also.

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Events Calendar

The file linked below, under the club logo is version 1 of the events calendar for the rest of this year and up to July 2018. This will be regularly updated as dates are confirmed or added.

This contains, internal club events and external events that we will or are planning to have club representation at. Check it out to see:

  • Social events
  • Water Polo
  • Open Water Swims
  • Triathlon
  • Runs
  • Cycle Rides

Let us know what you are entering / attending and we can really build the club and promote what we are all doing.

Let’s make 2018 the year of Parogon!

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Autumn News

Christmas Curry & Social

Saturday 9th December in and around Newcastle. Can numbers please be confirmed ASAP so that I can get a table booked. Also if you have any suggestions as to a venue, good yet reasonable they would be much appreciated. This is a lovely evening, all are welcome and it’s a great way to finish off the year.

Christmas Opening

We will confirm our opening times as soon as possible once the lifeguards have had a conflab!

Bike Ride 2

Further to the success of bike ride 1, where we had 11 people out the second ride is planned for Sunday 19th November, 1pm starting at the Poachers Cottage on the A34.

Two routes to choose from, 35 mile with hills at around 15 – 16 mph average,

or 15 miles with two lumps at around 10 – 12 mph average speed.

I know we are a swimming club but this is all great PR, build the club brand and will hopefully lead to a member or two. It also helps with the event planned next year:…..


Parogon Take Over of UK Triathlon

On the weekend of 2nd & 3rd of June we are looking to get as many people from the club as possible either competing or supporting at the UK triathlon event in Whitchurch. Kids, beginners, wanabees & professionals (Ed). So far I know of 5 or 6 who have entered the half ironman, one interested in the Olympic and 2 or 3 for the Sprint. That is alongside 10 ish kids interested in the event on the Saturday. So already we are looking up to around 20 competitors.

It’s about having a go and it is completely non-intimidating, the only pressure is what you put on yourself. The sprint is 500m swim, 20km bike and  5km run – eminently attainable with distances increasing as you go up.

Plan is to race in club kit, put on a show, club gazebo at the event, pre event pasta party, a weekend for the whole family…….

Again let us know & click the logo below for more information…..


A Battling Performance

The 13 & under polo team played their first friendly match of the year on Sunday 2nd April against Warrington, and what an afternoon it turned out to be!!

It was a strong 10, only missing Jaz from the players who went to Lancaster before Christmas and we were hoping for a slightly less emotional afternoon!

Parogon started off defending the deep end of the pool and despite making some lovely openings were let down by poor shooting with the shots going straight at the keeper. Keeper Zac was late arriving due to a COSACCS gala so Nat stepped up and went in goals and pulled off a few saves, but despite that we trailed 5 – 2 at the end of the first.

We then went on to win the second quarter 6 – 2 (8 – 7 to us at half time) with the counter attack working well and Ethan in particular using his swimming well and slotting three of the goals. As always it was Spencer and Reece holding it together at the back and Zac was back on form with some great saves and feeds.

Emotions were again running high at the end of the quarter with some misunderstanding of the offside rule, but once all had calmed down we were ready for quarter 3.

A much more assured performance saw Parogon draw the 3 – 3 attacking the shallow leaving us one goal up going into the last, attacking the favored deep end of the pool. It was in this quarter that Reece put himself about in attack and popped up with a lovely backhand from the pit for one of his goals.

All we had to do was not concede in the last, we did but only one to our 5 scored as once again our counter attack saw some great goals scored. What was so pleasing was that they were shared, Reece, Elliot & Nat with one each and Spencer with 2. Jenny & Chrissie also got into great positions but the keeper pulled off some great saves.

So in all a 16-11 victory, very encouraging with some elements to work on, particularly all players getting back and defending and our tackling of a moving player. All players did very well with mentions for Reece & Spencer for their sterling unselfish defensive work for the team, Zac for his feeds & Nat for the best he has ever played.

Well done all, on-wards to the next……


Christmas is Coming…..

A quick reminder of the Christmas program for the club this year…..

  • Thursday 22nd, open as normal
  • Saturday 24th, 8.30 to 9.30 training followed by a general swim until 10.30
  • Tuesday 27th, CLOSED
  • Thursday 29th, open from 6pm, Turkey Buster training session from 7.30 to 8.30
  • Saturday 31st, 8.30 to 9.30 training followed by a general swim until 10.30
  • Open again on Tuesday 3rd Jan as normal.

May we also remind you of the old boys polo match on Sunday 15th, please see the Facebook event for more details.

Finally may we wish you all a very happy Christmas and a Peacful New Year. 

Dark Nights – Xmas Calling!

Christmas Social

The annual Christmas social is due to take place on Friday 9th December. Nothing major, a few drinks followed by a curry. Can you please email to advise as to your attendance so that we can book the food.  Towards the end of the evening the prestigious swimmer of the year award will be given out – is it too late to make a late dash and move yourself up in the standings?


Our AGM takes place on Wednesday 7th December. All members are warmly invited to attend.

Movember Swim

Next Thursday, 24th, the juniors are doing a sponsored swim in aid of the Movember Charity. Steve one of our coaches is instrumental in this charity and they have raised a considerable amount over the past years. Please feel free to support, come down or even join in the swim.

Member Updates

I have lots of updates to bring you as regards events, individuals and successes and will get these out ASAP – so watch this space for news on junior polo, Ironman success and both adult and junior participation and one victor at the Trentham Traithlon.


We have received notification from the school as to a few issues that need to be addressed so can the following please be adhered to, as it always is…..

  • Shoes off before entering the main changing rooms
  • Ensure that the external door closes behind you when you enter. If it is propped open please close it.
  • Do not park on the school site – all parking is on Parkstone Avenue and then walk up to the pool.
  • No children are to play in the foyer without an adult being present. If children are staying whilst you train they must stay on poolside under yours and the lifeguards control.

Mid Summer Madness

Water Polo

The junior sessions are going from strength to strength and we are regularly getting number in the high 20s. Ages ranging from 7 upwards and it is great to see so many girls. We are working from a pool of 4 coaches and all of us are getting used to the noise!!!

We attended a match at Warrington the other weekend and played both U12 & U14 matches. The U12s did very well against a more experienced and at times physical opposition, and if it were not for us wanting to get all players a good length of time in the water would probably have won the game, as it was we lost the match by one. But that is not really the point, the aim is to develop the young players, give them all water time and ensure that they enjoy playing the sport.

We had 2 extra players for the U14s whereas Warrington had a complete new squad – we battled on bravely, scored a few goals, but the previous four quarters and added experience of the opposition showed. In the end Warrington ran out easy winners, but again our team showed great spirit, fight and attitude and learnt a lot.

Next up this coming Sunday we are hosting a tournament at the pool and this will be first time our fantastic new goals will be used in anger. We were fortunate enough to bid for and win funding from the Making a Difference Locally fund form Nisa foods. This has been administered via Lodeys on Paris Avenue, and we are extremely grateful to Brian and Michelle for the support. We will be getting a piece in the local paper after the tournament, with match reports and to also thank our sponsors.


Open Water

You will have seen the Derwent Water report earlier this month and next weekend we have a contingent heading off to Ullswater. This event is quite possibly our favourite event and all swimmers are this time taking part in the 3.8k. Look out for the event report the following week.


We cannot let two marriages go unnoticed either!!

You may well have noticed that Howard has looked rather stressed and a fair bit poorer this year and that is because Annie got married over the Spring Bank weekend to James. True to form H even managed to get polo and the club into his father of the bride speech – a true club man!!!

Also Harry has managed to slip away quietly in his own style and last weekend married Amy. Again many congratulations from all at the club.


True to form it is Ed who is taking the plaudits and congratulations for his efforts in triathlon. We all know that he works incredibly hard on his training and he is a true example of hard work paying off. In the last month he has won his age group in the Nantwich Sprint and came second in age group in the Gauntlet Half Ironman at Cholmondely Castle this last weekend. I can vouch for his speed as he went past me at the start of his half marathon like I was standing still. Spencer & I also entered this event and if you have not already seen my thesis on this click here to see it….


Third Place had gone home!!!

Margs Fundraising

Good old Marg is at it again and this time she is tackling the Manchester 10k Race for Life on 17th July. This will be her first ever 10k event and she is seeking sponsorship for this and rightfully so! See her at the pool or leave it with the lifeguard if you feel you can support her in this event.

Derwent Open Water

Last Sunday 5th June, saw the first of the open water events of the summer with a 5 strong contingent from the club hitting Costa del Keswick for the Epic Events Derwent water swim.

Family Cartwright were the advanced party heading up on Wednesday and as the weather was so good we had a couple of wild swims in Bassenthwaite and Buttermere. Fantastic, clear, warmish water and a great way to cool down on a hot day. That was until Christina saw a fish, I don’t think I have ever seen her move so fast, apparently it was huge!!!

Race day dawned, bright and warm, I was swimming in the 3.8 kilometre swim that has a 10 am start, so it was an early departure from the caravan to park up and register. Having cut off our arm and leg to pay for the parking it was down to the beach for the start. This is probably the first time I have been in the starting pen without another Parogon member to talk to, apparently cars are more appealing to Andy than me in a wetsuit!!

Derwent is unique amongst the swims as it is the only one where you cannot see the full course from the start, and it is surprising how being able to visualise the course really helps you stay on course and hit each buoy. It is also the longest loop of the events with long reaches between turn points, meaning it is easy to drift offline, one chap I was talking to clicked 4.3k on his Garmin. Initially I was disappointed with my time of 1 hour and 5 minutes, but this was my best ever place, 28th out of 255 starters and 4th in my age group.

Next up it was the girls, Christina, Fiona, Karen & Gemma, all of them were competing in the mile. For those of you who have competed in open water you will know how hard it is to stay alongside someone, now that is what Karen and Gemma achieved, was that motherly instinct??? Fiona was first out of the water in a fantastic time of 29.05 and coming 55th out of 257 starters. Karen and Gemma did a 32 and Christina came in in a 36. All great times and something to be proud of.


Ullswater is in July and the 3.8k for most. There will be a bigger contingent from the club at this event and lets hope for another weekend like the one we just had.

Easter Eggs, Polo & a Suprise

So thorntons-personalised-easter-eggsyou will probably over indulge this weekend on eggs, so what better time to get down to the pool and work off those extra calories.

The open water season is almost upon us and many of us will be taking part in events across the country.

Water Polo – Fixture @ Wellington

The younger team drew 9 – 9. We may well have won it if we hadn’t decided to give them a 4 goal lead before we started to play!

The U15 lost 11 – 2. In fairness, we were always going to be up against it as a number of their players were almost certainly a lot older than 15. It was also the first competitive match for Ed, Morgan and Alyssa, who unlike the rest of the team, didn’t have the advantage of experiencing playing against another team. It can be quite daunting the first time you play against players you don’t know. They acquitted themselves brilliantly.

Also well done to those player who due to lack of numbers had to play 2 full games without a rest. Hopefully we will have a few more substitutes next time.

Although there were a number of excellent performances, I’ve got to give a special mention to Zac. I thought he was outstanding in both games. Especially in the U15 game when he was being bombarded by some extremely hard shots, he managed to save countless efforts and keep the score respectable.

To a certain extent the score lines were irrelevant. The most pleasing thing from our point of view is that we are getting better with every game. We are becoming more competitive and if we continue to improve, the results will follow.

Training as usual this week, we are then having a week off and will resume on 7th April.

The water polo have also secured £1000 worth of sponsorship for new equipment and I will post about that soon.

Lawrence’s Eye

Saturday morning regulars will know Lawrence well, often seen sitting waiting for Debbie to finish her swim. Now what you may not know is that he has been out of the water a while as he has received a cornea transplant in his right eye. The sad part of this is that he has had to wait over 18 months to get a donor, so if you can and feel able sign yourself up to be  donor so that you can help people like Lawrence in the future.

Robinson Crusoe?


No – its Addison who is presently on one of these student travel things – apparently its the thing to do!!!

But he has gone one step further and gone and popped the questions to Rachel on a far flung deserted beach. Just what you want to see sitting at your desk in deepest Uttoxetet!!!

Many, many congratulations to you both from all at the club, and here is to many a happy year together…..