Race Coverage

A Memorable Day at Island Lake...

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BREWHOUSE OLYMPIC - WADE CRUSER, that silly goose, won this race in 2018. In the process he stripped JOSH BLANKENHEIM of the men's course record. Josh had hoped to reclaim the record this year, and do so against his nemesis / good friend / silly goose / Wade Cruser.

But Wade, Minnesota's 2018 Triathlete of the Year, did not make the trip to Island Lake this year. In fact, he hasn't traveled to ANY races this season....

 

So, Josh had to regain the record on his own.

And he did just that by following a solid swim with a hammer bike split (57:53) and a 35-minute run. No one ever got close to him. He was time trialing, and the result was a 1:57:15, lowering Cruser's mark by 32 seconds. It's worth noting that only four amateur men have bettered two hours on this route, which has been in place since 2013, and Blank has done it three times.

Josh is at the top of his game this year, and appears cetain to receive a Triathlete of the Year nomination and a Top 3 placement on Team MInnesota.shyannerun.png

Josh's winning was not the only foregone conclusion coming into this race. ELAINE NELSON was expected to win, too. 

And she did, almost as handily as Blank. Her time was 2:17:45, which landed her in 6th place overall, and 6:29 ahead of runner-up JESSIE MAHER, who's improvement in 2019 has been thrilling to behold. Last year, Jessie finished eighth here in 2:45, which was 21-minutes slower than her clocking on Sunday.

Maher garnered her first career tri win at Perham in late June.

Two Age Group records were set, one by Thunder Bay's BOB SHINE, 61, whose 2:19:25 was arguably the AG performance  of the day in the Olympic race. The other was set by DANIEL KIRK, 72. His time was 2:49:07. Kirk was nominated for Minnesota Grand Master of the Year in 2017.

 

BREWHOUSE SPRINT - This wonderful event was highlighted by two surprises. One, MIKE WARD did not win, and, Two,  SHYANNE MCGREGOR (photo R) did.

Nursing foot pain (plantar fasciitus), the eight-time BH Sprint winner (six at Island Lake, two at Pike Lake), still managed to finish 2nd against a very worthy adversary, KRIS NISULA, 43, of Thunder Bay, Ontario.

Kris races frequently in Minnesota and his scorecard is chock-full of podium finishes (Timberman, Brewhouse Olympic and Sprint), Superior Man). But his win on Sunday marks his first gold medal performance.

Finishing 3rd overall was McGregor, the women's champ.

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Shyanne was nominated for Rookie of the Year in 2018, but had only raced in one tri this season prior to Brewhouse, that being her long course debut at Madison 70.3 (3rd AG / 22nd woman - 5:12:34). And as good as that effort was, it didn't portend what we saw on Sunday. It didn't predict a win, especially one that was against as deep a women's field as has ever been assembled for this race.

But she did win. And she won BIG. And while two-time Minneapolis Sprint winner JENNIFER FITZHARRIS-FUNK, 44, turned in a runner-up effort that lowered her AG record by more than three minutes, she was still 3:15 behind 35-year-old mom.

McGregor's 1:05:03 was remarkable, as were the splits it took to make it happen. It bettered BETTINA KEPPER's course record by exactly one minute.

Keppers, a two-time winner here, finished third on Sunday, with 4th going to 19-year-old TAYLOR LUNDQUIST, who had won the Graniteman Big Lake Sprint the day before. 

Reigning Masters record holder CHRISTEL KIPPENHAN, 54, rounded out the Top 5. Fellow credentialed women MICHELLE BREILAND, JENA OGSTON and SIMONE LUNDQUIST took the next three places.

We told you the women's field as deep!

Three Age Group Sprint records fell:

40-44W - JENNIFER FITZHARRIS-FUNK - 1:08:18 (Prior: 1:11:38 - 2014)

55-59M - CRAIG PETERSON - 1:08:10 (Prior: 1:09:31 - 2018)

60-64W - MARY MOLINE - 1:23:06 (Prior: 1:28:49 - 2016)

 

As always, the Brewhouse races were special, and great memories made by the 316 finishers, of which 80-or-so were first-times. How cool is that!  RESULTS

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