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....

Treehugger Named Athlete of the Month......

tree-hugger.gif(Photo - Tree-hugging Deb Roberts is June AG AOM.)

ATHLETES OF THE MONTH - Who were Minnesota's most successful amateur multisport athletes during the month of June? According to the Minnesota Multisport Awards (MMA) Committee, the clear choices for  "overall" AOM's were Heather Lendway and Matthew Payne. The MMA Selectors named Chap Achen, 45, and Deb Roberts, 61, as the Age Group AOMs. Here are their June resumes:

FEMALE ATHLETE OF THE MONTH - Heather Lendway, 30, St. Paul, 30, St. Paul

1st @ Pigman Sprint - Course Record

1st @ Trinona Olympic - Course Record

1st @ Lake Minnetonka - Course Record (A likely Performance of the Year contender.)

MALE ATHLETE OF THE MONTH - Matthew Payne, 36, Columbia Heights

1st @ Buffalo Olympic - Amateur Course Record...

21st Century Champions...

DKTLTF2.gifOur records show that the following Minnesota male athletes have won at least ten multis since the millennial turn. Yes, we can be off by one or two here and there.

1. DAVID THOMPSON (St. Paul - photo L) - 89

2. BRIAN BICH (Duluth - photo below) - 44

3. MATTHEW PAYNE (Columbia Heights) - 29 (Since 2007)

4. PATRICK PARISH (Bloomington) - 28 (Since 2008)

5. BRETT LOVAAS (Minnetonka) - 28

6. DAN HEDGECOCK (St. Paul) - 24 (Since 2010)


8. KEVIN O'CONNOR (Medina) - 15

9. DEVON PALMER (Minneapolis) - 15....

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...

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