Turning up at Bath Sports Centre at 8.30am on Saturday morning was a bit of a struggle to say the least! We had enjoyed an entertaining firm's Christmas party the previous evening and there were sore heads all round. Not wishing to be perturbed by how we felt, Team Thrings warmed up alongside our competitors - 11 teams in total - participating in the Superstars Challenge. Friendly rivalry was the order of the day.
Our team consisted of Peter Cusick, Nick Lee, Nathan West and Sarah Ellis, together with our Superstar, David Flatman. We were very quickly welcomed by St Andrew's Primary School, who turned up in force and made a superb banner to support us. The children (and teachers!) did a great job of cheering us on continuously throughout the morning.
The first event was the tyre pull. Our Superstar put in a great effort in this battle between Bath's strongest men. Next up was Peter doing the 5,000m cycle - quite a distance at such a fast pace. He did amazingly well, completing his favourite discipline in 6.47 minutes, gaining Team Thrings a very clear first place!
Following this excitement, the 500m individual row saw David Flatman do Team Thrings very proud - coming first and completing the challenge in 1.23 minutes, narrowly beating fellow ex Bath player, Andy Beattie. The competition was now well and truly under way and, following plenty of liquids (non alcoholic naturally), the team were beginning to get a taste for winning.
Next up was Nathan with press ups - a sterling effort (need I mention the sore head again?) and 75 proper press ups completed in a gruelling three minutes. Nathan then had to turn sprinter to complete the 20m sprint. Surrounded by a cheering audience, he breezed in in third place!
Next was the extremely strenuous 5,000m team row. Team tactics ensued as we considered our working order in terms of strength and endurance. Unfortunately, we didn't get a top three placing and put this down to protracted changeovers... (and surely not the sore heads again?)
Not to be thwarted, it was onwards and upwards to the next event. Sarah completed the sprint cycle in 1.23 coming mid table. Following a very short recovery, it was Sarah again to shoot hoops. Feeling the pressure following some excellent efforts, and being the last person to complete the challenge, Sarah kept at steady hand and gained joint first place, shooting seven out of the 10 basket balls.
So, with only two events remaining, we considered our position on the leader board. How would we do overall? Peter was next with the bleep test. Not his usual chosen discipline but he did extremely well to gain us second place. The crowds gathered round for the final event - the crucifix tyre hold. Our other strong man, Nick, took to the floor. All competitors were loaded up with a car tyre on each arm. The clock started. Nick lasted 2.27 minutes gaining us second place, only losing out to Danny Grewcock. Great stuff!
The competitors waited with trepidation to hear the results. Team Thrings huddled and tried to work out if we might come in the top three. The final result was a very pleasing and well deserved 3rd place! Well done Team Thrings and a big thank you to David Flatman who was indeed a true Superstar. We proudly collected our medals... and considered again our sore heads and lack of sleep, but at least felt happier than we had a few hours previously!
Team Thrings would like to thank: Bath Rugby Foundation for superb organisation during the event; all of our sponsors for helping us exceed our target sponsorship and our colleagues, Danae, who dutifully set her alarm to come and support us, and Michael who took photos.