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HMS Collingwood’s cyclists have got “Watt” it takes

31 May 2017
Twenty-six energetic competitors between the ages of 21 to 63 recently took part in the first HMS Collingwood Wattbike Challenge.

Royal Marines Physical Training Instructor (RMPTI) Cpl Richie Ness organised the Challenge, utilising Collingwood’s state-of-the-art Wattbikes, after overseeing a similar event at RM Poole.

This equipment, based in HMS Collingwood’s Sports and Recreation Centre, replicates more closely the feeling of riding a road bike, with the added benefit that the rider’s energy output, heart rate and even pedalling efficiency can be measured.

The Collingwood Challenge consisted of four tests that could be undertaken in any order, provided they were completed within four days, with the aim of generating the most power in watts.

This was really hard work!

Lieutenant Commander Jon Pollard RN

The tests were three 10 minute sessions with 5 minutes rest, ten 1 minute on/1 minute off sessions, 1 full hour and five attempts to generate the most power for 6 intense seconds.

With the results calculated, medals were won by the victors of each of the individual challenges, together with trophies awarded to winners and runners-up in the ladies, veterans (over 35) and the overall winner category, presented by the Commanding Officer of HMS Collingwood, Captain Andy Jordan ADC RN.

Petty Officer Physical Trainer (POPT) Ayeshea Lockton won the trophy in the ladies category with Leading Hand (LH) Noorlander as runner-up.

The veterans’ Challenge was won by Commander Stephen Walker with Chief Petty Officer (CPO) Greg Connor taking the runner-up trophy but the overall winner, which had been decided only on the final day, was Lieutenant Commander Jon Pollard.

Leading Physical Trainer (LPT) Aaron Snowdon was the overall runner-up.

Lt Cdr Pollard said, “This was really hard work! As a lifelong avid cyclist I was reasonably confident in my abilities but as the competition progressed we discovered a few of us had similar abilities which meant the competition went right to the wire.

“In the future I may use these bikes to do more structured training because they have fantastic equipment here which I think has been underutilised.

“Now we understand far better how to use these bikes, how to link to them our phones and the training packages they offer.”

Cpl Ness commented, “The championships went down really well with those that took part and, although it was an extremely demanding week physically, after all the screeches and screams of physical exhaustion everyone left the bike with a smile on their face and a sense of achievement.

“The competition also created a real competitive buzz around the base which encouraged more and more people to want to get involved.

“It was a pleasure to organise and run the event and for it to be as popular as it was for a brand new competition for Collingwood was fantastic. I am looking forward to running the event again in the future which promises to be bigger and better”.

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