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Josh, Brooks, Rod & Andy...

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Here are the Masters men (age 40-59) that Matt and Damon think are likely Master of the Year candidates, if offical nominations are actually announced this fall:

JOSH BLANKENHEIM, 42, Duluth - Blank won both of his Minnesota races --Timberman and Lakes Country--and finished in the bronze medal position in his AG at Olympic Nationals....

BROOKS GROSSINGER, 45, Mayer - Brooks finished  a strong 2nd overall in his first three races: Apple, Clearwater Sprint and Timberman Sprint. He followed these efforts with an Age Group victory at Olympic Nationals and yet another win (his 17th!) at Northwoods. Like Blank, Matt and Damon agree that Grossinger should be a slam-dunk nominee for Male MOY.

ROD RAYMOND, 57, Duluth - It's great to have Rocket Rod back on the performance radar. He raced at a stellar level in 2022, taking the men's overall title twice --Shell Lake Sprint and Moose Lake--and placing 5th overall and setting a 55-59 divisional record at Hopkins. 

ANDY ZABEL, 42, Sartell - Simply put, Andy had his best season ever. He claimed the overall wins in all four--Apple, Buffalo Sprint, Clearwater Sprint and Hopkins--of his regional starts, doing so with consistently impressive times. He also raced at Ironman Juneau (AK), where he placed 7th overall.

Also considered: MIKE BUENTING, 47, Chanhassen, BRANDON LEE, 40, Fargo, ND, BRETT LOVAAS, 46, Minnetonka, DAVID LEWIS, 48, Nevis, KRIS NISULA, 43, Thunder Bay, Ontario, YAROSLAV PERVENTSEV, 46, Richfield.

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