Seventh time lucky for Nick

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However, both during and after the race from Bel Royal, the main talking point was the late arrival of last year’s winner, Nick Saunders, who turned up at 7.10am – for a 7am start – and subsequently left promptly for home.

‘Nick’s my coach, and once I knew he wouldn’t be competing it became an open field,’ said 32-year-old Le Cocq afterwards.

‘I felt really good during the run and I’ve been cycling a lot this year. Don’t ask me about my swim, however – I find that painfully hard! I’m just an average swimmer and next year I aim to time-trial in cycling. That’s my strength – road racing.’

For the second year in a row Guernsey’s Gail King (née Merrien) won the women’s race, this year in a time of 2 hr 17 min.

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