Race Previews

Kona Was a Bonus...& State Pride...

Diane-and-daughter.gifBy Diane Hankee

What do I hope to experience in Kona?  Well… the triathlon or the Hula dancing? 

I have raced some great courses this year and doing Kona will be the icing on the cake.  After riding Ironman Texas with my bike seat detached, crooked and wedged against the seat post, I am hoping that a flat tire will be the worst that will happen in Kona.  In TX I rode 65 miles with my seat in this condition and I debated if it would have been better to ditch the seat entirely.  I didn’t want the day to end so I went with it.  Thankfully the course was flat but the train tracks and bumps were numbing.  My husband warned me in TX not to adjust my seat before the race.  It was so painful that it resulted in a great bike split.  However, going through water stops was like riding a unicycle and the distraction and pain lead to nutrition issues and a bad race.  I felt horrible...

when my fix a flat punctured and sprayed all over the competitor behind me.  Being heartbroken about TX, I signed up for Ironman Louisville KY to resolve TX, and see what I could do.  My goal wasn’t Kona, Kona was a diane-long-teeth.gifbonus.

Since I wasn’t planning on going to Hawaii (KY was 4 weeks ago) the trip isn’t what I would have planned, but none the less my family is coming and we are going for it.

This will be my first trip to Hawaii and my thoughts go back and forth from the race to the vacation; we are staying the week after.  I am so excited.  I’m going to need a psychiatrist when I get home to deal with the fact that I don’t have to train anymore.  My son is sad because he is my running partner (on his bike) and we never made it past his girlfriend’s house yet.  Te he he on purpose, he is too young for girls.

Photos - Above L - Diane with one of her daughters. Above R - With one of her many sons, Diane is looking a bit "long in the tooth."

pan-neilsen.gifBy Suzie Fox

It's pretty amazing that we have 4 women from MN going to Kona with an IM PR of sub 10:22! Michelle Andres (10:05), Emily Kratz (10:18) ( I haven't met her yet but am excited to), Pam Neilsen (10:15 - photo L), and Diane Hankee (10:21). Then Cindy Blackstock who is the true champion and stronger than all of us put together! Seeing her big beautiful smile on the race course after what she has been through this year, if that doesn't motivate and move you, nothing will! 6 super strong and incredible women representing MN this year, I can't wait to be a part of it! I feel like we're sending the A Team, stoked for each and every one of us!!!




+2 #2 HJL 2013-10-08 12:08
What an amazing bunch of women!! Good luck to you all, safe and fast racing, we'll be cheering from MN!!
+2 #1 mary deeg 2013-10-08 08:41
I am in awe of the fabulous 6 Minnesota women going to Kona. Have a terrific race!!! We are so proud.

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