Forget corporate away days or blue sky thinking, nothing will ever come close to lining up on the start line of the Corporate Mix for RBC Super League Jersey.
Sixteen teams are taking part for the 2018 challenge, racing on Saturday 29 and Sunday 30 September.
Title sponsors of Super League Jersey, RBC, have entered three teams for the Corporate Mix. They will be challenged by Ravenscroft. Comprop, Santander, First Names and YESSS POWER who all have two teams. There’s also some strong competition coming from tech savvy teams Tappit and WATTeam.
Each of the teams have their own motivations for taking part. Ravenscroft is a significant sponsor of sport in the Channel Islands supporting some of the Islands most successful athletes. Now it’s time for them to step up and be the athletes themselves in the dynamic world of multi sport. Their teams are titled the Ravenscroft Centurions and the Ravenscroft Titans. Patrick McConnell is captaining the Centurions and as a seasoned half marathon runner he’ll be anchoring the team home. James McLaughlin will be heading up the Titans – having finished in sixth place at this year’s Commonwealth Games he’s got the pedigree.
Michael Dhulst, Super League Triathlon (SLT) Co-Founder, says: ‘The Ravenscroft teams have huge strength in nationally talented athletes and have put together a combination that will be the envy of all of the teams on the starting line. Can they live up to the expectations and take home the title? Anything can happen in the crazy world of SLT!’
Comprop is a leading privately-owned property developer in Jersey and Guernsey. They’ve decided to test their team work in a different dimension and give triathlon a go. Having entered two teams into the Corporate Mix they have two highly skilled captains leading the way – Becky Steens (swimming superstar) leading Team 1 and Jo Gorrod (an axe on the bike) leading Team 2.
Michael Dhulst says: ‘They said they had so much fun at the event last year that coming back was a no brainer. We’re told they have one massive strength in the form of a triathlon specific terminator called ‘The Michael Steens’ and hidden talents including Simon Roderick’s consistent personality no matter how many beers he’s sunk and Becky Steen’s ability to paint her nails whilst on the bike!’
Santander also competed in last year’s Corporate Mix, so they are back with experience under their belts. They have put two teams into the race with inspirational leaders captaining them both. Jane Stafford (2017’s Most Inspirational Sporting Person – voted by her colleagues) is heading Team 1 and James Geldart is taking on the challenge of leading Team 2.
Michael Dhulst says: ‘With the Santander teams, there is some internal rivalry as it’s the senior management team versus the rest of the staff – so we’ve got ourselves a race within a race! With strength in experience, both teams are filled with individuals determined to succeed – probably driven by the desire to beat the other team – so we’ll see some seriously gritty racing if they’re within striking distance of each other but they have to remember what happens on the course stays on the course!
‘We’re told their weakness lies in the swim with none of them being huge fans of the wet stuff and one of the teams has been spreading rumours about jellyfish in the harbour!’
As one of Jersey’s largest private employers Royal Bank of Canada (RBC) are fundamentally rooted in the community, so the opportunity to race around the Island they know so well is heightened by their role as title sponsor and partner.
They have named their Corporate Mix teams after Canadian hockey teams. David Bailey will lead the RBC Maple Leaves, Rupert Hague-Holmes will head up the RBC Canadiens, and Senator Lyndon Farnham will front the RBC Senators.
Michael Dhulst says: ‘The RBC teams are ready for anything with a range of talents from their broad base of athletes. They have been doing some serious work on their transition speed, which is crucial in an SLT event. The one major weakness we are told is a fear of sharks…. If they survive the swim in one piece, then we’re expecting some big gains to be made on the bike and run so the rest of the field better watch out as these athletes are the real deal.’
TAPPIT is a platform that has cashless payments at its core and this tech savvy team will be bringing firepower to the Corporate Mix and are looking like a team to be reckoned with. Captained by Chris Weeks they have strength in running with a 6th place finisher at the recent 70.3 World Championships and one of their sponsored athletes being their secret (not so secret) weapon.
Michael Dhulst says: ‘This team is certainly one to watch. They are embracing all that is Super League and they intend to not only win on the race course but also win in the bar for the post race celebrations!’
YESSS POWER have entered two teams into the Mix with both teams relying on the leadership of former Made in Chelsea TV star Spencer Matthews. He will be bringing his experience and dedication to triathlon to the YESSS POWER assault on the race.
Michael Dhulst says: ‘YESSS POWER’s strengths are found in their diversity, with one team drawing on an international group of team members from different locations and backgrounds and the other made up of local talent. Their teams have the dedication, team work and professionalism to pull it off!
WATTeam are cyclists who are passionate about crafting affordable add-ons. Their POWERBEAT gives sports people access to a data driven understanding of their training and racing. Their experience on two wheels will be hard to beat.
Michael Dhulst says: ‘For a company founded on transparency and access to information, they have been very secretive about their line-up. They have decided to keep all information off the table until they arrive in Jersey, which leads us to believe they have some pretty hefty power coming our way. Look out for this team as we think they have the potential and a foundation of excellence to take the Corporate Mix by storm.’
First Names Group have entered two teams and they have balanced experienced triathletes with total novices. Their main advantage is occupying an office that overlooks the course, so they have first-hand knowledge of the demands of the tight circuit.
Michael Dhulst says: ‘They’re being very secretive when it comes to their captains – saying no more than the fact that they were chosen for their ability to motivate and lead from the front, both through performance and vocal inspiration. Their two teams are keeping their cards close to their chest and looking to top the podium for the first time!’