Race Coverage

Vets & Whippersnappers...


GRANITEMAN CLEARWATER SPRINT - As in the women's Olympic race, elite masters swept the podium at Graniteman Sprint last weekend.

This wasn't unexpected.

And while all pushed hard, hoping to win, one of the ladies had an additional incentive to go as fast as she possible could, and the result was her 2nd victory in as many tri starts this season.

SARA RONDORF (photo) started the race in Wave 5. Her husband JEREMY started in Wave #4, three minutes ahead of her. She was able to make up about a minute on him in the water, but their bike splits were basically identical.

Sara wanted to beat her husband even more than she wanted to win the race. And not only beat him on paper, she wanted to actually beat him to the finish line.

She blasted out of T2 like a bat-out-of-heck. She was leading the women's race, but knew that JENNIFER FITZHARRIS-FUNK, 43, and Alaska's LORI DESCHAMPS, both accomplished runners, were bearing down.  ...


She pushed as hard as she could through the thick, greasy morning air. And she did indeed catch, then pass, Jeremy. Though she overtook him perhaps a little earlier than she had expected to, she didn't back off.

But neither did JFF or the decorated Alaskan. The result was another win for Rondorf, with Jennifer crossing 28 seconds later, and Lori 16-seconds after that. These women all posted times that were fast enough to land them in the middle of the overall Top 10. More precisely, they placed 4th, 5th and 6th.

Rondorf's time was 1:14:47. Only NICOLE HEININGER and CHERYL ZITUR have faster performances on this 10-year-old course.


While masters tri vets were rocking both of the women's races at G-Man, a gaggle of teenage whippersnappers were gobbling up top spots in the Sprint.

Not all of the top spots, though. The topiest of the spots went to pre-race fave BRIAN STORHAUG, who grabbed the lead on the bike and never looked back. It was the third consecutive win here for the burly Alexandrian, whose time--1:08:22--was his PR on this course.

The next three men's spots were claimed in order by KYLE SWENSON, 17, who now has three junior titles (and two AG records!) in three starts this season, CARSON DEICHMAN, 16, and another Carson, CARSON ROEHL, who like Deichman, has labored in the shadow of a decorated sibling until this year.

Swenson's 1:08:22 was the second quickest teen clocking ever at this race. Only former Junior of the Year NICK KLONNE has gone faster (1:05:38 in 2016).

Roehl, top junior here last year, was seven minutes faster this time around.

FYI, another junior, MACY IYER, 15, to the surprise of no one, finished 4th (1:20:00) in the women's Sprint, and 12th overall. Only two-time Junior of the Year GRETA DANIELSON has faster times on this route.

Two sprint age group reconds fell last Saturday. LUKE HARNED, 65, celebrated his tri debut--he's been a star AG duathlete for years--with a 1:21:38, almost six minutes better than the prior 65-69M record. And THOMAS ROHMAN, 72, who appears to be steamrolling his way to another Grand Master of the Year nomination, popped a 1:26:45, improving the old mark by a porcine 11:08.

Coverage of Graniteman Olympic's men's race plus AG commentary is coming soon. SPRINT RESULTS

Photo - Whippersnappers KYLE SWENSON and CARSON DEICHMAN receiving well-earned awards.




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