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Proud of His Wife...

renee-burton.gifBy David Burton

Renee Gittens grew up west of the Cities in Rockford and trained with her high school cross country team in the Lake Rebecca Park reserve that Liberty Tri takes place in now.  Renee also competed in Gymnastics and Track.  She always wanted to compete in the pole vault but they didn’t let girls do that in the 80’s.
 

Renee  (photo) and her Cross Country team competed at the small school cross country state championship her senior year in High School. During the winter of the same year, she suffered a badly torn ACL during a gymnastics training session that doctors told her would end her running career.

Flash forward 20 years and the pain in her knee had her back at the orthopedic surgeons office just hoping to walk normally again. The doctor told her that if she was willing to work hard at her rehab she would not only be able to walk – she could run if she wanted.

At that time Renee, now Renee Burton, and I were both about 40 lbs overweight but we were ready to make a change and over the next 5 years Renee and I worked our way from walking around the block to running around it – eventually competing in local 5k races.   She started picking up age group awards that reinforced her motivation and kept us training....

Rising to the Challenge...

lisa-leonard.gifBy Lisa Leonard (Team Nevada)

Race Report - Best of the US, Olympic Triathlon, St Paul, MN

As an invitational only race I knew this would be certainly the toughest race of the year so far. In Triathlon you often race against your 'age group' however this was a flat out race against the best amateur triathletes in the USA. Current and former national champions, triathlete of the year, long course national champion...this race had them. It was a small but incredibly stacked field. My biggest fear...making a complete embarrassment of myself, letting down everyone who has supported me in getting here. As a relatively last minute race, my coach Jeremy Wallace wasnt sure it was the best decision to go - I had just come away from racing 4 out of 5 weekends in May including a half ironman (2nd), state TT championship (1st), Devlees Road Race (2nd) and Sand hollow sprint triathlon (1st). Our focus was supposed to be shifting towards prep for Ironman 70.3 Worlds in September. Nevertheless, with support from the awesome people at Bike Shop Henderson I found myself able to travel to Minnesota for this prestigious event. Eyeing up the competition at the 'Meet n Greet' on Saturday was pretty nerve racking but by this point I had shifted my focus to concentrating on my performance - the result had to be secondary....

Mom Said, "You Don't Look Too Good"...

R3-logo.gifBy Kortney Haag

REV 3 RACE REPORT - I have always wanted to try out a Rev 3 race but the last couple of years this race didn’t fit into my schedule because it was too close to Ironman Wisconsin with it being in August. This year, however, they moved the race to June so Derek and I decided to give it a go. Derek is racing Ironman Wisconsin this year and so we knew it would be great training for him with the hills…however, he had his appendix removed 4 weeks ago so this was definitely a training race for him. I wanted to do well at this race and use it as a test to see where the fitness is with Kona being 3.5 months out. I knew it was going to be hilly…but WOW I didn’t realize how hilly! Ironman Wisconsin has nothing on this course…I would have cried if I had to do that course one more time!

I didn’t know what to expect that morning as I am not superstitious but during my pre race warm up my bike helmet fell apart and I had to rubber band it together and then I ran over and killed a squirrel when I was warming up on the bike!  ---

Legacies & Great Vibes...

new-lwt-logo.gifRACE PREVES - Final Stretch is producing two triathlons next weekend, North Mankato on Saturday, and Lake Waconia on Sunday. It goes without saying that Mark and his crew will put on first class races, events that deserve your entry fee. We certainly hope that you will do one or both of these great swim-bike-runs. There are still plenty of spots left in each race, but act fast. Check FS's WEBSITE to see when registration closes.

For North Mankato, which will celebrate it's 16th anniversary on Saturday, we expect to see several past champions and all of the usual Mankato Multisport Club regulars. If you've never done this race, check it out. It's got a great "community" vibe. Also, the event includes a Kids Tri that is truly awesome....

Weekend Observations...

Travis--Matt---BOUS14.gif(Photo - Oklahoma's Travis Newton and BOUS Champ Matt Payne wearing shirts that Kevin O'Connor had made for Matt's fans. We cherish ours and will wear it often.)

The MTN Guys look back on Minnesota's eight-race weekend:

LAKE MINNETONKA OBSERVATIONS - Awesome, as always. Ross and Tina pour their hearts into this event and it totally shows. And the weather was totally cooperative.

We are still having trouble wrapping our brains around Heather Lendway's performance. A freakin' 1:04:53! We recall the all-time great amateur female triathletes, women like Donna Kay Ness (CT), Maryellen Powers (NH), Joanna Zeiger (MD), Margie Shapiro (VA) et al. In our opinion, HL is a cut above them all, and we've been observing the sport since 1978.

 - The Roberts girls, mom Deb, daughter Christina, impressed our pants off on Saturday. Deb flattened her own 60-64W CR. Add this to the divisional CRs she set at Liberty Olympic and Buffalo and you have the makings of a Grand Master of the Year nomination at season's end. Her daughter Christina placed 2nd overall in 1:11:14, only...

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