Race Coverage

"A Blast!"

bettina.gifZ-TRI COVERAGE - Brendon O'Flanagan of St. Paul, and Tara Makinen of Grand Rapids, won this Independence Day race for the second time last Friday at majestic Pokegema Lake south of Grand Rapids, and both did so in record time. For BO, who also was victorious here in 2012, his 1:02:07 lowered his own men's course record by more than two minutes. For TM, her time was just less than three minutes faster than her 2013 clocking.

Alone in second place for the guys was 2013 Rookie of the Year nominee, Larry Hosch, who posted an impressive 1:04:37. It was Larry's ninth podium finish in 13 starts. The St. Joseph resident is still looking for his first win, which we predict will happen this season. In fact, it could occur as early as next Saturday at Graniteman-Clearwater.

Also cracking the Top 3 for the men was Alan Dettmer, who is from Fergus Falls, we think. Maybe Alexandria....

An Amazing Day...

chris-finishing.gifED. One of America's best 40+ female triathletes, Indiana's Chris Wickard blogged about her BOUS experience:

By Chris Wickard (http://chriswickard.wix.com/triathlete/apps/blog)

BOUS Race Report - This was my 6th appearance at the Best of the US (BOUS).  I think of BOUS like a mini USAT National Championship, as it brings out some very talented athletes.  Unlike Nats where you are competing against others in your age group, at BOUS you are competing against all the other female or all the other male athletes.

The hosts/organizers at BOUS .....are extremely passionate about the sport of triathlons.  So if you ever have the opportunity to participate in a race that they are involved in, you know it will be spectacular. 

The morning began with the inaugural Capital City Sprint Triathlon.....

Once a majority of the sprint athletes finished, it was time for the BOUS to begin.  Our race was an Olympic distance.  One of the many great things about this race was that is was very spectator friendly.  The swim was 2 loops, the bike was 3 loops, and the run was 2 loops.  This is definitely nice for those out there cheering us on as well as the athletes since we would get lots of cheers and encouragement throughout the course.

Our race was a relatively small field of competitors but it was packed with talent.  The males and females started the swim together.  It was surprising a not very physical swim.  You never can tell when the males and females start together if it will involved swimming on top of each other.  Since we all had the same swim caps, I couldn't tell how many females were...

Holy Balls, Batman!

gaby-and-coach.gif"I need more cowbell, baby!"

By Gaby Bunten

BOUS Race Report- When I received the e-mail for an invitation to compete at Best of the US for Iowa, I was overcome by a phrase that my dear old dad has coined, “Holy Balls Batman.” I knew that the competition at the race would be stacked with a field of talented ladies and gents.  My initial anxiety for the race happened with that e-mail. It became a battle of am I worthy of competing with such a field and what would I bring to the table at this race? Well, of course I immediately consulted the best coach ever, Miss CY. She gave me one of the most positive vibes I have ever received from a coach, and for that thank you CY! But I was able to go into the race with a new frame of mind, the only thing I needed to accomplish that day was to push myself harder than I have ever before and when all else fails, just smile.

The night before the race, my dad had texted me, “Rock on tomorrow. Mom and I are bringing Hells Bells (our two springer spaniel puppies) and our cowbell, gotta have more cowbell, baby!” Leave it ...

Big Bike Splits...

nicole-winning.gifNicole Heininger (photo) proved on Sunday that a big bike split can trump the fast swim/run combination.

On paper, Nicole Heininger and Christina Roberts were the likely picks to finish 1-2 in the women's race at Lake Waconia. The wild card was Heidi Keller-Miler, now 49, who won this race in 2012.

HKM, though, hasn't finished a tri since September of 2012. Injuries and the demands of life have kept her on the sidelines since then. The fact that she was unable to finish at Trinona three weeks ago also clouded the issue. Was she ready to return to racing, and to reassert herself as one of our region's premier masters triathletes.

The answer to that question is "Yes."  Her swim an bike splits on Sunday were solid, and though her run wasn't her best, her ultimate 3rd place finish had to be encouraging. It was great to see her back on the scene. We hope that she races often enough to garner a Master of the Year nomination, an award she's won on multiple occasions, and a spot on Team Minnesota.

Heininger was a surprise runner-up at LWT in 2013. Launching from a later AG wave, it was not discovered until the awards presentation that she actually had the 2nd fasterest women's time. That result earned her a BOUS invitation and helped her earn the Rookie of the Year trophy....

Saturday Capsules...& Sunday Highlights...

carol-and-3-guys.gif(Photo from 2012 NMT - Future Anthem singer /veteran triathlete Denny Ellingson, Mike Borneke between smiles, the ever-exuberant Carol Marston and another guy.)

16th NORTH MANKATO DUATHLON - Dave "Hercules" Lyon, who's wife Veronica is a HOOT!, and Kristin Gustafson, who won Superior Man last year and has a great tan, led the way for their respective genders in breezy, steamy North Mankato yesterday morning. Lyon prevailed despite suffering from what he called a "groing thing." Herc also won here in 2013.

Todd Landgraff, who won this race in 2011 and 2009 and missed all of last season in order to change poopy diapers, placed 2nd, 41 ticks after Lyon. 2013 women's champ Jenna Rinehart, who is a pro mountain biker, finished 18 seconds after Gustafson. Thirdsies went to Mike Cahill and Veronica Bond.

The event, which was totally good, drew approximately 200 race day entrants. Perennial division...

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....

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