11th June 2016

Laura Kennington kicks off Channel Islands triathlon

Adventurer Laura Kennington set off on one of the most demanding – and unusual – triathlons ever to be hosted by the Channel Islands. Between 11 and 13 June, she completed loops around three of them using four different means of self-propelled transport.

Writing on her website, Laura Explorer, she explained that she had been looking for stretches of open water in the UK that would provide her with a decent swimming challenge. When she saw how close together the Channel Islands were, she had her idea. She would visit them for a demanding three days of swimming, paddling and peddling.

Tri-island triathlon

Laura started her swim on the west coast of Sark and swam north around the larger part of the island, coming ashore at Maseline Harbour. It was by far the shortest part of the triathlon, but at five miles, was no mean feat – particularly not when navigating some of the largest tides in the British isles.

The 29-year-old athlete was accompanied at all times by a support team in kayaks providing food and drinks – including hot chocolate. Despite having the tide against her on part of the route, she was ahead of schedule at the half-way point.

The kayaks would be back in action on the second day when the plan was to paddle around Guernsey. The weather was far from ideal, though. The island was shrouded in fog when she set off, significantly reducing visibility when just a short distance from shore.

The route started at Portelet and went south, then east to circumnavigate the island counter-clockwise. Had she managed to complete it, she would have propelled herself 28 miles through the water. By the time she’d got half way, though, she and the support team decided that it was too dangerous to continue. They took their boats out of the water and she walked the northern part of the island, then back along the west coast to return to the start point.

The final event was the longest of the lot: a 45-mile a cycle ride around the largest of the Channel Islands, Jersey.

Her ride started in St Helier and took her by Gorey Castle, then through countryside shrouded in mist. It was hardly the ideal time to have visited any of the Channel Islands. However, she was accompanied by riders from the Jersey Roulers on this last leg, who gave her company and kept her on the right track. She made it safely back to St Helier by the end of the day. In doing so, she became the first person to ever attempt such a triathlon in the Channel Islands.

A video of her achievement has been posted to YouTube.


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Other events that occured in June

Cricketer Charles Grieve died in Shropshire 1st
St Johns undertook its first Guernsey rescue 2nd
Bailiff John Guille died in Plymouth 3rd
GUNS writer Joseph John Gillingham was deported 4th
First arrests were made at Guernsey Airport 5th
Jethou was put on the market 6th
The king and queen celebrated Guernsey’s liberation 7th
Occupying forces confiscated Guernsey’s radios 8th
Guernsey Railway company ceased operations 9th
Guernsey welcomed its first steam ship 10th
Laura Kennington kicks off Channel Islands triathlon 11th
Dame Sibyl became a dame again 12th
Guernsey voted to legalise local abortions 13th
Victor Hugo’s house is opened to the public 14th
The Channel Islands were demilitarised 15th
Guernsey was invaded by Colorado beetles 16th
States Telephone Department was established 17th
Pollet guest house fire claimed its third victim 18th
Aurigny founder Derrick Bailey died 19th
Guernsey joined the Football Association 20th
Guernsey’s school children were evacuated 21st
Guernsey celebrated Queen Victoria’s jubilee 22nd
Princess Elizabeth opened Guernsey’s hospital 23rd
Guernsey chose England over France 24th
First meeting of Guernsey’s Controlling Committee 25th
Guernsey bought Fort Grey from the War Office 26th
Guernsey coffee trader William Le Lacheur died 27th
G-JOEY completes his last flight 28th
Guernsey suffered its first and only air raid
The Star was published for the first time 29th
Two deserters were shot after landing on Guernsey 30th