Last weekend saw Jane Taylor lift the overall Ladies Winner trophy at the inaugral ‘Lincolnshire Edge’ Olympic Triathlon. This year has seen Jane collect age group titles aswell as qualifying for the GB team in Duathlon. Living in the same village as Jane and witnessing her running her dog at 6:00 AM it’s easy to see why she’s become so successful at these multi-sport events. You may have to google her dream dinner guests though, I did.
Jane, how and why did you get involved in triathlon/duathlon events?
I think the blame for this can largely be laid at Chip Taylor’s door (my next door neighbour and no relation). When we moved to Hibaldstow I got inveigled into playing hockey for the first time in over 20 years for a while. I started running to get fit for hockey and then Chip said I should join Lincsquad and try triathlon. After some pooh-poohing the idea I signed up for Beverley and Brigg sprints. I went along with my trusty hybrid and breast stroke swimming and was hooked.
Your recent overall win at the Lincolnshire Edge triathlon was something special. Apart from being obviously fast, how’d your race go?
I was very happy with it. I loved swimming in the reservoir – thanks Kev Fish and Anglian water – and the swim went very smoothly. Transitions were as rubbish as ever but I made sure I had a bit of flapjack and some liquid before I set off on the bike. I really enjoyed the cycle with friendly marshals all round the course and a lovely route. I did manage to call Shona “Shallot” but I was trying to say “thanks a lot, Shona”. The run – ha – it was hard work. My cap blew off running round the reservoir. I didn’t want to be disqualified for littering so chased it down and left it with the long suffering turn marshal. When I reached the turn for the first time on the road Sue told me I was first lady which was astonishing news and made the run suddenly much harder. I was getting pretty hot and tired when the rain came – I have never been so glad to be rained on. Near the end of the run I met up with Dan Ellis and he encouraged me over the line – thanks, Dan.
Do you prefer the longer distances or the sprint? Would you consider an Ironman?
So far I have only done Sprints and Standards or variations of those. Each has its own merits and pains (agonies) and I enjoy both – in retrospect at least. This year my main challenge is to do my first Half Ironman and I am entered for the Sundowner at Allerthorpe. I am half terrified, half excited by the prospect but largely looking forward to it. So, there’d better not be any crashes at the relays this year!
As to Ironman: I’ve always said I would never attempt a marathon, so why would I do one after all that swimming and cycling? Even so, Steve Clark nearly tempted me into thinking Ironman Austria next year would be a good idea.
A recent PB at the Lincsquad TT’s suggests you’re going as fast as ever, has your training increased? What’s your secret?
Yes, that is surprising when I’m at the age when performance drops off materially by the minute. You may not want to hear this folks, but there is a huge difference physically between being in your 50s and being in your 40s.
Two secret weapons: new bike and, more importantly, excellent coaching from Steve Clark.
Swim, Kayak, Cycle or run? What’s your preference?
Difficult. Running is where I came from, sort of, but one of the things I love about triathlon is the cross training and trying to improve all the disciplines. An easy swim in sparkling water on a sunny day is hard to beat; a social cycle with friends or family in beautiful countryside is a delight; and those days when running actually works make you feel euphoric (sadly few and far between).
I would love to be proficient but I can’t actually kayak. A challenge for 2016 perhaps?
Sorry, there’s not really an answer there, is there?
Proudest Sporting Achievements?
Winning the Edge Triathlon; cycling C2C with my sister; winning British Airways hunter trials and placing at Frome ODE; riding for my Uni; qualifying for duathlon GB age group team.
Best advice received and from whom?
From my riding instructor when I was 11yrs and first started riding:
If you look at the ground that is where you will end up.
What has life taught you that you can pass on to your children?
Meet life with optimism; love, value and support your family and friends; the things you have to work for are the things that will mean the most to you.
Sadly, what they have really learnt is: shout at machines when they don’t work; chocolate makes a good staple diet; housework comes bottom of the priority list except when we have guests coming.
Your Sporting hero/inspiration?
Lucinda Green and Paula Radcliffe
Something not many people know about you?
I was born in Tanganyika (now Tanzania).
Your dream job?
I think I may be about to start it at De Aston school working as a Librarian with the main objective of encouraging reading throughout the school with a team of like minded professionals.
4 x Dream dinner party guests.
Neil Gaiman, Lionel Blue, John Bishop and Clare Balding.
Favourite meal and where?
A meal I had with my lovely husband at the David Bann restaurant in Edinburgh – all vegetarian but excellent nonetheless with some superb wines.
Your most treasured multi-sport possession?
Has to be one of the bikes, but which? I still love my Raleigh although Joe has been doing his best to wreck it; the new Dolan TT bike is really above my touch and is lovely; but the Ribble probably just edges it. I’ve done quite a few miles and competitions on it and I built it myself (with advice and assistance from Jon, Steve Canning and Dave Hinch).