National Honors For Becky?


In our Sunday/Monday post we discussed why we believed that GABY BUNTEN will receive a USA Triathlon 2019 Athlete of the Year Honorable Mention. Today, we explain why we think that BECKY YOUNGBERG will be a finalist for USAT Master of the Year.

For women, three age groups comprise the Masters category: 40-44, 45-49, 50-54. And since, with good reason, USAT favors athletes who excel at their National Championships, it is reasonable to assume that the winners of those three Masters categories at Nationals will be the first athletes to be evaluated for the MOY and MOY HMs.

At Cleveland Nationals, decorated distance runner GINGER REINER, 42 (MA), finished 8th overall and won the 40-44 AG. Becky Youngberg, 45 (MN), won the 45-49W, placing 17th overall, and ADRIENNE LEBLANC, 50 (AZ), took the 50-54, and was the 14th fastest woman overall.

Reiner and Youngberg also raced at Sprint Nationals, and once again, won their respective AGs. As two-time National Champions, Ginger and Becky were likely post-season honorees.

Further research revealed that Reiner won her AG at the Lausanne World Championships (Olympic distance), and LeBlanc did likewise, beating 2000 Olympic Triathlon champion Brigitte McMahon of Switzerland in the process....

Though Becky's resume did not include a World Championship medal (she didn't race in Lausanne), her excellent results at USAT licensed events--1st Master / 3rd overall at Madison 70.3 (Masters Record), 1st overall / Masters record at Timberman Olympic (2:07:35), 2nd overall at Chisago Half IM (4:37:28), and 1st overall at Maple Grove Olympic (2:06:06)--are enough to convince us that Becky deserves the MOY.

But we are not the USAT Selection Committee.

Though Youngberg would receive our vote, we believe that the Federation will rank LeBlanc, who was their MOY in 2017 and had earned HMs on four previous occasions, and Reiner, who like Becky, is heretofore undecorated by USAT, ahead of Youngberg. Becky will, we contend, earn an Honorable Mention.

Who, then, will be chosen? Our guess is that Reiner will take home the MOY.

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