Race Previews

Three Decades of Awesomeness....

bhlogo.png

BREWHOUSE XXXI PREVIEW - The 31st Brewhouse Triathlons, the fifth at its spectacular Island Lake venue, will happen next Sunday, and the question is: Which race will be Epic-er, the Olympic or the Sprint?

Interestingly, the women's field in the Sprint is deeper this year than the group that is currently signed up for the longer race. Still, the Olympic women's race features a pair of true stars who have yet to face each other.

As for the men in both races, according to the registration list we perused, the favorites are clear: JOSH BLANKENHEIM and MIKE WARD. Both are defending champs, and while Blank will be gunning for his 2nd straight Olympic win, Ward has his sights set on his 6th Sprint title. 

Back to the Olympic women.

The clear favorites are BH veteran ELAINE NELSON, winner here in 2014, and DANI VSETECKA, who will be making her Olympic debut on Sunday. 

Can Dani give Elaine a great race? Absolutely. Despite her inexperience at this distance, she is arguably one of the Top 3 amateur female duathletes in the US, and perhaps our country's fastest amateur female 70.3 racer. She's simply a great triathlete, one with a pro future, if she decides to go in that direction. Certainly a fast 32-mile race is something that Vsetecka (pronounced "Sheh-teska") can master on her first attempt.

The Elaine/Vsetecka match-up could produce a course record. (Oops! We've started to wet ourselves. Can't wait to watch this battle unfold.) We also think that TIFFFANY KARI will match her 3rd place effort of 2016, doing so in a PR in the 2:17-2:18 range.

Back to the women's sprint field. Check out this alphabetical list of podium contenders:

- LORI DESCHAMPS, 46, Anchorage, AK - A frequent medalist at Nationals, Lori could crack the Top 3, but it won't be easy.

- BETTINA KEPPERS, 34, Duluth - She's done this race twice, setting a course record last year after placing 3rd in 2015. Bettina has been on fire for the last two years. We predict that she will duke-it-out with Lendway for the W....

Make Short Course Triathlon Great Again...

triathletes_group.png

By Erin Beresini (triathlete.com)

The eight-race series just kicked off a huge makeover at last weekend’s Minneapolis Triathlon.

In January, IMG announced its Escape From Alcatraz series, five races that gave top athletes slots to the iconic, always-sold-out (and expensive) Escape from Alcatraz Triathlon. Now Life Time Tri aims to give IMG a run for its money by taking pages from obstacle course racing and Ironman to create its own short course series, culminating in the inaugural Life Time Tri New York City Championship next July. The goal: to make tri friendly and accessible to new triathletes, while getting vets stoked on going short. Here’s how they plan to do it....

Payne Train Bound For Chisago...

m-pain.png

 

CHISAGO SPRINT PREVIEW - PATRICK PARISH set the men's race record--1:15:17--back in 2010. Will that mark stand for another year?

Not if MATTHEW PAYNE (photo) has his way.

Payne is a two-time winner of the Chisago Half, and will be making his sprint debut on Sunday. The four-time Minnesota Triathlete of the Year is anxious to return to his winning ways. Misfortune has been getting in the way lately. Leading at Lake Waconia last month, Matt made a wrong turn. That was followed by a bike crash at HOLT.

He needs a great performance to get his mojo back. Besides, a win would be a major milestone:  the 50th of his tri/du career.

If Matt is on top of his game on Sunday, he might do more than just re-setting the amateur record. If he is able to go faster than 1:13:50, he will have managed to beat the event's pro mark, which was set in 2014 by DAN HEDGECOCK.

 

It always helps to get a good push when you're aiming at setting records. Based on the last reg. list we saw, a pair of Andys--WIBERG and ZABEL--will be vying for podium spots, as will CHRIS TATTON. 2016 Junior of the Year MITCHELL CLAYTON, who is fresh off his win at Buzz Ryan, could find a place in the Top 5 when all is said and done next weekend....

Walker Preve...

flex_ladies.png

WALKER TRI PREVIEW - The 8th edition of the Walker Triathlon happens next Saturday. About 200 participants are expected....

Lotsa Love For Chisago!

chisago_logo.png

 

RACE PREVIEW - For the last two years, the CHISAGO TRIATHLON has gone by the name Toughman Minnesota. We're pleased to report that the event is reclaiming it's original title.

Yes, it is still part  of the Toughman Series, but it built it's reputation on it's wonderful relationships with the people and institutions of the Chisago Lakes area, Minnesota's "Little Sweden," thus in deference to them, the event will hereafter be the Chisago Triathlon. (As Toughman Minnesota, some event participants may have lost touch with the wonderful Swedish influences--food, flags, awards etc.--that defined the race for its first nine years.)

So, let us encourage those who have yet to sign up for Sunday's events, to amend that right now. Be among the 1000-or-so attendees that will participate in this year's Half IM and Sprint races.

Now for some athlete-related stuff. The men's race will, as usual, be super-competitive, but we will begin by talking about the women's half. Five past champions are currently registered. They are, in alpha order:

- ERIN FARRENS, 37, Maple Grove - 1st here in 2016 (4:49:07) - Personal Best - 4:43:13 - 2016 Timberman (NH) 70.3 (IM PR - 10:02:29 - Louisville 2016)

- KORTNEY HAAG, 38, Maple Grove - 1st here in 2014 (4:34:23) - Personal Best - 4:34:14 - 2014 Chisago (Kort has won eight halves!)

- DIANE HANKEE, 40, Lino Lakes - 1st here in 2013 (4:46:08) - Personal Best - 4:38:51 - 2016 Muncie 70.3 ...

2017 Minnesota State Tri Championship...Updates...

tony_and_christina.png

HEART OF THE LAKES PREVIEW - The 32nd edition of this venerated event will happen next Sunday. (In case you didn't know, HOLT's long course race has been the "Minnesota State Triathlon Championsip" for the last twenty-three years.)

The main purpose of ths preview is to entice our state's tri community to do this race, as it is the only multisport event on the July 15-16 weekend. HOLT has always been a come early / stay late party and we'd like the 2017 version to be huge.

Lovingly produced and possessing a wonderfully prideful small town vibe, Heart of the Lakes  is not just one of our state's premier swim-bike-runs, it is one of the best in the entire Midwest. If you haven't done this event yet, please register ASAP. You're sure to be...

Please update your Flash Player to view content.
Please update your Flash Player to view content.
Please update your Flash Player to view content.

Sign up! Get updates from MTN