Long Course Weekend drew to a close on Sunday, with one competitor claiming a new marathon record for the Pembrokeshire run.

It was a wet and windy start to the Long Course Weekend On Friday evening at Tenby’s North Beach - with Wales' biggest open water swimming event set in a truly iconic location kicking off the triathlon set across three days.

Long Course swim start 2024
The Long Course Weekend triathlon, began on Friday (June 21) with the swim on Tenby’s North Beach (Photo Gareth Davies Photography) (Photo Gareth Davies Photography)

Athletes from across the UK and from overseas took part in the Wales Swim, in front of hundreds of spectators who created an electric atmosphere to kick off the triathlon event.

The wet weather didn’t dampen the spirits of supporters, as massive crowds gathered to watch competitors hit the water to a fireworks display, around the picturesque surroundings of Tenby harbour.

With two distances to choose from - the Wales Swim provided the perfect start to wet the appetite for anyone watching or taking part in the Long Course for the first time.

Some took on the 1.2 mile swim; and others the 2.4 mile option, starting to the North side of Goscar Rock.

The cut off point for the first lap was 7pm; and 8pm for the overall cut off; although many competing pointed to some of the worst sea conditions they had faced.

Log Course cyclists
Saturday saw the Wales Sportive cycle ride, with compeitors seen here taking on the infamous Heartbreak Hill at Saundersfoot (Photo Gareth Davies Photography) (Photo Gareth Davies Photography)

“I am traumatised by that!! I could not believe how much swell and current there was!” remarked one after the event; with another stating: “It was horrific. The back stretch was like a washing machine, distance to the first buoy felt like a marathon and I couldn’t get back from the lifeboat station. First lap was hard, second was worse.”

Another thanked those tasked with safety in the sea at the event: “The first lap was rough, didn't think it could be worse on the second but it was, and now has topped my worst ever swims list. Massive thanks to the support borders for sitting out there.”

For the Wales Sportive cycling challenge on the Saturday and Sunday’s marathon, as in previous years, Pembrokeshire Council and the event organisers stated that it would be necessary to introduce a number of traffic restrictions around parts of the county to enable both to take place in a ‘safe environment’.

Long Course run
The marathon took place on the Sunday with plenty of familar local faces taking on the challenge, along with competitors from overseas (Photo: Gareth Davies Photography) (Photo: Gareth Davies Photography)

Following the success of last year, the start and finish on both Saturday and Sunday was from the Salterns car park in Tenby (rather than the centre of the seaside town in Tudor Square) which removed road closure restriction from the town centre.

Congratulations went to winner and new Long Course marathon record holder - Liam Lloyd with a time of 8 hours and 13 minutes. A big well done also went to Emily Marchant ladies Long Course Weekend winner.