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Well Worth the Drive...

claire swim(All Photos courtesy John Lovretta/The Hawk Eye.)

By Claire Bootsma

Lake Geode Challenge - Lori Rudy, the super friendly and nice race director of the Lake Geode Challenge, asked that Dan Hedgecock and I extend an invitation to all Minnesota triathletes to come down and race next year. If you don

Seriously Cool Awards...

dalaChisago Sprint Preview - One of the many cool things about the Chisago Lakes Triathlon is it's reverence for Swedish stuff. The Chisago Lakes Area, which encompasses the villages of Lindstrom, Shafer, Center City and, of course, Chisago City, promotes itself as "America's Little Sweden," thus it's appropriate that race organizers "Swedish-icize" their event.

They do so in a number of ways. For instance, serving nummilicious Swedish pancakes and ice cream after the event. And finishers stride beneath a large blue flag adorned with a golden cross.

And this year, awards winners (in both the sprint and the half) will receive totally cool and beautiful Dala Horses (photo L), which are very important in Swedish culture. Gloria, CLT founder/director and one who is always on the lookout for cool ways to upgrade her events, sent us this cool verbiage about Dala Horsies:...

Dala Horsies & Pancakes...UPDATED..

julie(Photo - Julie Hull winning the 2008 Chisago Lakes Half. Her 4:37:13 still stands as the women's amateur course record.)

Chisago Lakes Preview - Of all the great multis that have been added to Minnesota's annual schedule in the last 10 years, the three most ambitious events are Life Time-Minneapolis (2500-3000+ entrants), the Buffalo Triathlon (1500 entrants) and the Chisago Lakes races (1800ish entrants in 2011).

The sixth edition of the Chisago Lakes Half / Minnesota State Long Distance Championships and Sprint will be grandly staged at beautiful Paradise Park in Chisago City this Sunday. As ever, the field will not only be huge, it will feature a veritable plethora of our region's most talented athletes. It's impossible to look at the start list and not get excited.

We are especially anxious to she how the women's Battle of Super Cinco-genarians shakes out in the half. Two-time Ironman Wisconsin amateur champ, Jan Guenther, 52, of Mound, Minnesota, who has won for halves since turning 40, will go against North Dakota's Barb Kuhlmeier, who owns Chisago's 50-54W CR (4:52:47).....

Make History!

logoRace Preview - The inaugural Life Time Leadman Triathlon in Nevada was a "Wait-and-See" race. Lots of athletes were interested in the event, but it was soooooo unique and challenging that they chose to wait-and-see how it went. Maybe they'll sign up for next year's event if all goes well this time around.

Well, only 49 intrepid souls chose to do that event, and less than half of them finished. Still, what the waiters-and-seers learned via post-race word-of-mouth is that they missed a helluva race, one that's destined for greatness and humongous participant numbers.

Leadman was a FANTASTIC event!

The inaugural TwinCities Triathlon is also a wait-and-see race. About 300 have accepted the challenge so far, while thousands of others are waiting to see how an urban tri with a Mississippi River swim turns out....

Racing Stuff...

samjen* RACINE STUFF - Elite St. Paulian Sam Janicki (photo) made his half IM debut at Racine 70.3 on Sunday. After satisfying swim (28:33) and bike splits (2:18:46), Sam admitted that his run time (1:39) "needs a lot of work." Still, his 4:29:38 was a very encouraging rookie effort. He placed 27th overall / 12th amateur and 4th in his 25-29 AG. Don't be surprised if The Sam-inator anchors his next half with a 1:20-25 run.

FYI, he's scheduled to race at Chisago next weekend.

MTN congratulates all the Minnesotans who accepted the Racine 70.3 challenge. And please stay tuned for Jennifer Martone's race report, which will post later this week...

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