Race Coverage

"...Bemidji...Always a Special Place..."

ryan-and-women.gifBy Ryan Wippler

PAUL BUNYAN TRIATHLON RACE REPORT - Race Day: I was feeling a bit beat up still from Granite Man Clear Lake, but the only bummer of the day was that due to road construction we were not able to run past the giant Paul Bunyan and Babe statues.  That trivial disillusionment aside, Bemidji will always be a special place for me; I guess because I probably wouldn’t exist without it.  My parents met at Bemidji State, “the university on the lake”, as my late father, Patrick would reminisce.  Growing up I remember attending a myriad of fairs, festivals, 4th of July fireworks, parades, picnics, days on the lake-heck, even hockey camps, in this fine city.  [Fun Fact #1: my mother, Diane Wippler, was voted Miss Congeniality of the 1971 Miss Bemidji Contest.]  Although, the weatherman had threatened severe storms with damaging hail overnight, the early morning ambience at Cameron Park could have not been more agreeable with the sun rising and reflecting off Lake Bemidji bathing the triathletes in a warm morning glow as they busied themselves with transition setup.  Times like these make me forget about 3:45 a.m. wake up times followed by 2 1/2 hr drives.  Man, I love our state. ...

Crispy & Micah's Mom Rock the Buzz...

leane-boat.gifPhoto - Accomplished triathlete Leanne Bronson--front row in red shorts, can you believe she's 45?--hanging out with several of her self-medicating friends.

 

4th BUZZ RYAN SPRINT - We knew that this day would come. What are we talking about, you ask? We knew that Jason Crisp, who had won his share of multisport races during his residencey in South Dakota, would eventually start winning on this side, the right side, of the border as well.

Yes, Jason Crisp won the 4th annual Buzz Ryan Sprint Triathlon at Island Lake last Sunday. His time was brisk, a 53:03 on the elongated route. (The bike portion had been lengthened by two miles.) Had he been racing the old route, his time would have been a sub-50, which would have crushed the previous CR....

More Milestones For Matt...

HOLT-podium.gif30th HEART OF THE LAKES - THE MEN - Riding at least a mile-per-hour faster than anybody else means that you will catch those that outswam you and power into T2 all by your lonesome. You probably won't have to bust your hump too much on the run, but that's no reason not to. Especially when you want to win the National Championships three weeks hence.

That's how Matt Payne picked up his second consecutive win at Heart of the Lakes last Sunday, which was his 7th victory in as many starts this year. More impressively, it was the 40th W of his career. So you know, his first win was at the original Graniteman in Rockville back in 2008. The dude's come a long way in a relatively short period of time.

Though unsurprising, Matt's win was exciting to watch. Similarly unsurprising, yet concommitantly thrilling, were the performances turned in by Matt's podiummates, Josh Blankenheim and Kevin O'Connor. For Blank, it was his 3rd 2nd-place effort of the season and his time on the HOLT...

Deb Pumped Her Fist...

CRoberts.gifBy Warren Peece

30th HEART OF THE LAKES - THE WOMEN - As Deb Roberts approached the finish line at HOLT on Sunday, she pumped her fist in celebration. She did so not because she had raced well, though she had (placing 2nd in her AG behind that pesky six-o-genarian, Pammy Stevens), but because the announcer guy told her and everyone within earshot, that her daughter Christina, had won the overall women's title.

Christina Roberts raced brilliantly at Annandale. She followed her signature strong swim (2nd fastest of the day for the women) with her best bike performance to date. The MTN Guys had contended in recent posts that a little more bike speed was all that was keeping Christina out of more Winners Circles. Well, she more than held her own in the saddle on Sunday. Only top tri cyclists Suzie Fox, Kortney Haag and Lisa Lendway, had faster splits. When Roberts came into T2 with those women, she looked energized. She was smiling. She knew something that the rest of us would know soon enough....

Breakthroughs, PRs & Successful Debuts...

dani-and-heiney.gifHEART OF THE LAKES - BRIDGET MCCOY had a breakout victory at Life Time - Minneapolis two Saturday's ago. Yesterday, at the perennially awesome HOLT, it was CHRISTINA ROBERTS' turn to have the performance of her life. More words and photos tomorrow. RESULTS

RACINE 70.3 - Several Minnesotans rocked socks at Racine yesterday. BRIAN SAMES lowered his 70.3 PR from 4:16 to 4:12 and was the 4th amateur to cross the line. And GABY BUNTEN's long course debut produced a 4:52:15, which topped her AG and placed her 6th among female amateurs. Finishing just ahead of Gaby in 5th place was NICOLE "HEINEY" HEININGER (photo L with 7th place pro / honorary Minnesotan DANI FISCHER), who turned in a sweet 4:48:01. Her time was only 1:27 off the 70.3 PR she set last year at Chisago. FYI, KRIS SPOTH popped an impressive 4:13:53, which placed him 7th among amateur men.

RESULTS

LIFE TIME - NEW YOUR CITY TRIATHLON - Despite an uncharacteristically lackluster swim split, St. Paul pro HEATHER LENDWAY managed to crack the Top 5 in the Big Apple. Duluth's JESS ROSSING finished 8th among amateur women. RESULTS  ....

Thompson & McCoy Repeat in SD...

PACKET-PICKUP.gifALSO: Here are some results links: PAUL BUNYAN, HEART OF THE LAKES and BUZZ RYAN. Lots of great racing news to share, both here in Minnesota and elswhere. Visit MTN tomorrow for coverage.

(Photo - Best Packet Pickup facility ever.)

OUTLAND CHALLENGE SPRINT - As they did in 2014, St. Paul residents David Thompson and Bridget McCoy dominated their respective genders at the Outland Challenge Sprint, South Dakota's oldest triathlon, yesterday. For DKT, who is undefeated in four starts this season despite dealing with an annoying injury or two, it was his 97th career win. Though he was a tad slower (24 seconds) than in 2014, his margin of victory was greater--10:16 to 9:12.

David plans to defend his title at Heart of the Lakes Sprint this morning, and perhaps even dip under the magical 40-minute mark. His course record is 40:04...

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