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Dan and Bella...

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On Facebook a few months ago, Mike Buenting suggested that the MMH Committee add specific Performance of the Year honors for Juniors, Masters and Grand Masters.
He was especially interested in the Junior Performance of the Year because his daughter had been nominated, and subsequently won, the JOY.
We told Mike that we liked his idea.
We did not reassemble the MMH Committee to consider “Category POYs,” but here are ywo of the Performances that we, the MTN Guys, would recommen

PERFORMANCE OF THE YEAR – Male Master
This was an easy one. One performance rose above all the rest, thanks in part to the fact that the field was narrowed by the absence of Matt Payne, and the low racing volume of Kevin O'Connor. Those guys can always be counted on to deliver national-level results.

Still, Matt and Kevin would have had to turn in super efforts to be competitive with DAN ARLANDSON's Ironman Wisconsin performance. There the 43-year-old Burnsvillian placed 3rd overall among amateur men in a time of 9:20:31, which might be a state men's masters record....

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Numbers Crunching Spiritual Artist...

 

Berindressedup.pngy Erin Lahti (Facebook)

I told myself I wasn't going to do a typical year end post. But, I'm a big fat liar. The last few years, I post my total milage (swim, bike, run) for the year. This year's numbers just didn't stack up to previous years. And I'm totally okay with that. Its ironic how important those numbers used to be to me.

Yes, I logged less. But, I smiled more. 😁

2019 was simply the most interesting year of my life thus far. Navigating through a divorce, single parenting, a car accident, injuries, a new job, and my first DNF, just to name a few things.
I've never been so afraid. I've never cried so much yet laughed so hard. I've never traveled so much and met so many amazing people. Learning to always be grateful for whatever comes my way. Slowing down and being kind to myself.

I'm continuing to learn about myself, the universe around me and where I fit into it....

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Thinking About 2020...

 

2019 cathyswimcap.pngwas an odd year. A few prominent athletes either didn't race at all (Wade Cruser, Matt PayneSuzie Fox, Jesson Baumgartner), or raced in out-of-state events only, (Gaby Bunten, Joe Adriaens), or only sparingly (Elaine Nelson, Kevin O'Connor, Dani Vsetecka, Nicole Heininger, Sam Hauck).

Sean Cooley only raced in one Minnesota tri last year. We're used to seeing him at between five (2018) and nine (2017 and 2016)  local races. Likewise, Jordan Roby is also a veteran of 5 - 9 annual local races, but like Sean, he only raced in one Minnesota tri in 2019.

No judgment here. We just miss watching these great athletes do that voodoo that they do so well.

On the positive side, there were those who filled in some of the gaps in 2019, like our state's most decorated female multisporter Cathy Yndestad (photo L), who returned to Minnesota after having lived  abroad for four years; and up-and-coming collegians Rachel Zilinkskas and Jenna Horner, as well as elite rookies Paige Schulz and Caryn Herrick.

Will everyone be back in 2020?  ...

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Another National Honor For Tony?

 

Thetonyplaid.pngre seems to be two categories of Elite Age Group athletes. The largest category is comprised of men and women who score within the parameters of recognized performance standards. The smaller "eliter" category consists of those who are capable of setting new standards, and sometimes do just that.

They are the "bar raisers."

Who are some of the male bar raisers? 2018, 2017 USAT Master of the Year LEE WALTHER, 56, of Oklahoma City is certainly one, as are Midwesterners TONY SCHILLER (61, Chanhassen, MN) and GREG TAYOR (65, Yankton, SD).

Tony and Greg are two of the most decorated American AG triathletes ever, and both appear destined to be 2019 USA Triathlon Grand Master of the Year finalists. Greg took home the GMOY in 2017 and 2015. Tony became eligible for the award in 2018, and, in our opinion, raced well enough to be named GMOY Honorable Mention, but was overlooked....

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Full Circle...

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By Guy Limbeck (postbulletin.com)

Rochester's Ruth Brennan Morrey didn't get to indulge too much over the holidays. That's because she was in training, like she has been virtually her entire adult life.

The former professional triathlete was also recovering and celebrating from a recent marathon that earned her a spot in the upcoming U.S. Olympic Trials.
The 44-year-old qualified during the California International Marathon on Dec. 8. The women's standard to qualify, within a two-year window of the Olympics, is two hours and 45 minutes. Brennan Morrey had a time of 2:43.41.

"It was super exciting because it was a goal of mine for the last two years since I retired from triathlon," Brennan Morrey said. "It was just a goal that was pretty special as it was the 20-year anniversary of when I qualified for the first time." ....

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