Ruther Hat Deutschland..

ruther-airport.gifIRONMAN FRANKFORT - Next Sunday, Ruth Brennan Morrey will face what is arguably the deepest women's field of her young pro career (though St. George's field was similarly awesome) at the European Ironman Championship in Frankfort, Germany. The prize purse is $150,000 and pays 10-deep. Despite the depth of field, we believe that Ruther will come back with a check in her pocket. In fact, we think she'll make at least five grand. And yes, she has a shot at a podium spot, though a 4th or 5th seems more likely.

Here's the prize breakdown: !. - $30,000, 2. $15,000, 3. $8000, 4. - $6,500, 5. - $5000, 6. - $3500, 7. - $2500, 8. $2000, 9. - $1500, 10. - $1000.

If you've been following women's IM racing in the last few years, you'll probably agree that Switzerland's Daniela Ryf is the woman to beat. The 2014 70.3 World Champion won two IMs in 2014 and finished 2nd at Kona. Not bad for her first season doing 140.6s. Her PR is 8:53, but many of her peers think she's got what it takes to become the next Chrissie Wellington, if that is possible.

We won't bet against Ryf on Sunday.

Other podium contenders include three-time Franfort champ Caroline Steffen, also of Switzerland, who has more sub-9s than anyone else in the field, Julia Gajer of German (PR - 8:51), and Denmark's Michelle Vesterby (PR - 8:57)...

Larry's Time Has Come...

larry-and-son.gifPhoto - Larry Hosch and his coach.

ZTRI PREVIEW - Winning your first triathlon is a life-changing deal. Just ask Gaby Bunten, who won her first race last year, picked up her 2nd W at RochesterFest and has been a threat to win every event she's entered this year.

You can also ask masters athletes Jen Neuman and Angie Hop, both of whom are a HOOT!, and both of them started winning races after they turned 40. Jen now has six victories, and Hopper has eight.

We believe that Larry Hosch's life is about to change. He's our pick to collect his first career multisport win this weekend at the 4th annual ZTRI on majestic Lake Pokegema south of Grand Rapids. He was runner-up there in 2014....





Broken Records, Leapt Fences & Bum Knees...

Brian-P-leap.gifLAKE WACONIA TRIATHLON - Who said that triathlon wasn't a spectator sport? We think it was a guy named Larry.

Larry was wrong. Triathlon, while not the same kind of viewing experience that you have when you watch a stadium sport or sports on TV, has thrilling moments that more than make up for those periods when all the athletes are in the hinterlands, out of sight though not necessarily out of mind.

The 26th edition of the Lake Waconia Triathlon, which in our humble opinion is and has been a nearly perfect sprint race, happened last Sunday and it was chock full of exciting moments, spectator moments.

Perhaps the most entertaining of these moments happened when Northfield's Brian Porter was hammering toward the final 90-degree turn that led to, as the great Phil Liggett would say, The Finishing Line. On autopilot, Brian overshot the turn and was headed into the transition area when spectators alerted him to his boo-boo. Regaining consciousness, Brian turned around and headed back toward the finishing line. He made a hard left at the fencing, which he soon learned marked the outside, not the inside, of the finish corridor. Instead of backtracking yet again, he lept over the fence (photo) then stumbled toward the timing mat, which he rolled over. It was soooo cool to watch and the spectators LOVED IT. ...

June 2015 Performance Report Card...

sheri--lc-nats.gifIf the MMAs were presented every month during the season, who would win the awards for June 2015? Here are our choices:

JUNIOR OF THE MONTH - Nick Klonne, 18, Rockford - In three starts, Nick was top junior and set AG records each time. At Manitou, he placed 2nd overall and also cracked the Top 10 (9th) at Liberty Half. At Buffalo Olympic, he placed 11th.

Also considered: Eliot Slade, Mitchell Clayton and Alyson Welch.

MASTER OF MONTH: Kevin O'Connor, 44, Medina - KO raced often and awesomely. In five starts he had one outright win (Liberty Olympic), two amateur wins (Pigman Sprint and RochesterFest Olympic - Masters CR), a 2nd (Lake Waconia) and a 4th (Capitol City).

Also considered: Tony Schiller, Sarah Mercer, Cheryl Zitur. 

GRAND MASTER OF THE MONTH - Sheri Schrock, 61, Cohasset (photo L) - Sheri WON her AG by a huge margin at the ITU Long Distance World Championships in Motala, Sweden last weekend. For us, this effort gave her an edge over fellow considerees Jan Guenther, Greg Taylor and Deb Roberts....

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