Race Coverage

"Thank You For Bringing a Triathlon Back to Alexandria."...

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By Spencer Syvertson

ALEXANDRIA TRIATHLON - As triathletes pulled into the newly constructed Brophy Park they were greeted with the hillside mountain bike trails on the left and the blue body of water with a lone island on the right. The athletes walked their bikes across the Central Lakes bike trail as they made their way to transition along the western lake of the iconic Alexandria chain of lakes. Numerous athletes were carrying kayaks and stand up paddleboards as they opted for the paddle triathlon which was offered along with the traditional swim-bike-run race. The Brophy Park beachfront transition allowed for a view of the entire park from the focal point of the race....

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KIds These Days!

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Youth dominated at Sunday's MAPLE GROVE TRIATHLON. Teens took three of the four overall titles, the other was earned by a seasoned 22-year-old. Exciting stuff.

With four FAST overall wins thus far in 2021, KYLE SWENSON, 19, has shown that he might be the most talented male junior that our state has ever produced. His brilliant 1:55:07 in the Olympic race certainly drove that home. His victory margin over 2nd-place UW's IAN BORMETT was 2:24, and 3:17 in front of bronze medalist JOSH MORK, one of region's most accomplished tri star.

University of Iowa's LAUREN STEINKE, who is originally from St. Cloud, edged out likely 2021 Most Improved nominee KATIE DEREGNIER for the Olympic win. With her PR effort, KRISTINA SWENSON placed 3rd. ...

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Cookies, Cartwheels & a T-Rex...

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By Doobie Kurus

Women of all ages came out for the inaugural 4WOMEN Tri at beautiful Lake Ann in Chan last Sunday, including Heidi Schrad of Eden Prairie, who carried her daughter across the finish line. Over 100 women registered for the event, including a field of nearly 50 in the mini-sprint distance alone.

Bette Rowley, of Burnsville, was the overall winner, with a time of 1:03:47. The youngest competitor was 10 year old, Sabrina Shrestha, who did a cartwheel before coming across the finish line.

On the other end of the age spectrum was Judy "the T-Rex" Rykken, who at age 83, opted to forgo any sort of floor tumbling move and just use the classic "jog" across the timing mat, where the crowd erupted in cheers! Although that may have been for the custom treats from the Cookie Cart, a non-profit that teaches jobs skills for inner city youth by making AWESOME cookies. ...

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Cami & AJ Throw Down at Younglife....

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YOUNGLIFE TRIATHLON COVERAGE - It's a great year for rookies in Minnesota. KARL NYGREN has huge potential, especially in long races. HENRY JESSEN,too, albeit in the shorter stuff. His performances at both Olympic and Sprint Nationals were that of a veteran Elite, not a newcomer.

And then  there's CAMI ECKHOFF (photo)She came into the season with two tri efforts under her belt, both at her hometown Younglife Sprint, which was not enough to constitute a season of racing, thus her eligibility for 2021 Rookie of the Year consideration.

In 2019, Cami posted a respectable 6th place at YL Sprint. Her time was 1:20:03. In 2020, she finished 5th in 1:13:29. Nice trajectory.

On Saturday, she won the race, posting her 2nd win of the season. Her time was 1:05:47. Not since TARA MAKINEN's performances here in 2009 and 2010, has a woman gone that fast in this race. Moreover, her margin of victory was 8:42, and her overall place was 3rd....

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"....They're Missing Out."

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By Doobie Kurus

Moose Lake Triathlon Race Report - As a race director, I have made a conscious effort to signup for other multisport events in MN, so that I can both learn from them and also to support them. Last year, I tried GraniteMan Big Lake and Clearwater, and YoungLife (Detroit Lakes) for the first time, as well as returning to Green Lake. This year, I tried the Apple Du (Sartell) as well as returning to Buffalo, TimberMan, HOLT, and Brewhouse. This past weekend, I decided to try the Moose Lake Tri for the first time ever. Like several of the triathlons in MN, many people have never heard of the Moose Lake Triathlon, but I think they're missing out. My wife, Joyce, and I stayed in Finlayson with some friends, although there is a campsite right next to the transition area.  

On Saturday morning, we drove to Moose Lake and made my way to the transition area. This tri is on the smaller side, with a field of less than 100, but drew people from all over the state. I even met a woman (Jane Hutzol) from Bismarck, ND who finished 2nd in the women's division, and had done about a 1/2 dozen triathlons...

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Another Great Morning is Spicer...

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GREEN LAKE TRIATHLON - Minnesota is blessed to have so many great small town triathlons. Rural beauty. Rural charm. Laid back vibe.

Two such events happened last weekend. Saturday's Northwoods Triathlon was terrific. And so was Sunday's Green Lake Triathlon. Interestingly, both races celebrated their 18th anniversaries, meaning that 2003 was a a great year for upstart races in our state.

Northwoods had 215 finishers this year, Green Lake had 213, most of whom did the Sprint race, which was predictably dominated by a  pair of foreign (ND and IL) athletes that love to race on Minnesota soil. Fargo's AJ MANNING, fresh off qualifying for Worlds at both Sprint and Olympic distance, had popped a 56:38 here in 2020, which would have been a course record had the swim been full advertised length. This year he again led from start to finish over the .25 - 14 - 2.85 course, crossing is a blistering 54:32, which actually lowered the record by 3:14.

He wasn't the the only man to crack the one-hour mark, something that had only been accomplished six times prior. The other guy, also a foreigner who crosses our western border somewhat regularly during tri season, was KEVIN MITCHELL of South Dakota. The 51-year-old banked impressive splits throughout en  route to a 59:06, which obliterated the previous best by a 50-plus male here by 4:25.

Maple Grove's JOSH DOEBBERT rounded out the Top 3 with his 1:03:42.

North Aurora, Illinois' KARAH OSTERBERG, who is a total HOOT!, has a family vacation cottage on Leech Lake, allowing her to pop down to Spricer and fit in a triathlon. In 2018, she won the Sprint in 1:09:07, the 3rd fastest women's time in race history. She bettered that when she returned in 2020, posting a 1:07:32 in a 2nd place effort (remember the swim was weather-shortened last year). This time she basically...

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