Race Coverage

Seven Records Fall at Lakes Country...

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21st LAKES COUNTRY TRIATHLON - Seven age group records were rewritten this morning at Whipple Lake in Baxter, and the overall favorites did what they were expected to do.

Most of the AG records fell hard. Let's start with the women's 55-59 division, where half of the overall Top six women were from that category. Leading the way was AMY WOOLSEY, 56, whose 1:12:21 was bettered by only two younger women. She was followed to the finish line by 2020 Grand Master of the Year, LISA HINES, 58, AG winner here in 2019 and 2018, by 42-seconds. Placing 6th overall was former AG-record holder MARY DEEG, 59, whose 1:14:15 was only three seconds off her 2017 CR.

The 55-59-year-old women's category is arguably the most competitive of the women's AGs this season. Not only are Woolsey, Hines and Deeg posting super results, their division also boasts the participation of national-classers (in alpha order) CHRISTEL KIPPENHAN, 56, TRACY SERREYN, 57, JULIA WEISBECKER, 55, CHERYL ZITUR, 56. ...

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Bee-Ware! And T-Rex Joins the Volleyball Team...

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By Doobie Kurus


4WOMEN TRI - At the age of 83, Judy "T-Rex" Rykken is an inspiration to all, especially the women and young ladies at the 4WOMEN Tri that she spoke to upon accepting her age group award. When asked for some words of wisdom, Judy said, "Just keep moving...they can't put you in the ground if you're still moving". Most of the adults nodded and laughed when they heard this. Some of the young children present turned (with a weird look on their face) to their moms and asked "What did that lady mean Mommy?" ...

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"Thank You For Bringing a Triathlon Back to Alexandria."...

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By Spencer Syvertson

ALEXANDRIA TRIATHLON - As triathletes pulled into the newly constructed Brophy Park they were greeted with the hillside mountain bike trails on the left and the blue body of water with a lone island on the right. The athletes walked their bikes across the Central Lakes bike trail as they made their way to transition along the western lake of the iconic Alexandria chain of lakes. Numerous athletes were carrying kayaks and stand up paddleboards as they opted for the paddle triathlon which was offered along with the traditional swim-bike-run race. The Brophy Park beachfront transition allowed for a view of the entire park from the focal point of the race....

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KIds These Days!

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Youth dominated at Sunday's MAPLE GROVE TRIATHLON. Teens took three of the four overall titles, the other was earned by a seasoned 22-year-old. Exciting stuff.

With four FAST overall wins thus far in 2021, KYLE SWENSON, 19, has shown that he might be the most talented male junior that our state has ever produced. His brilliant 1:55:07 in the Olympic race certainly drove that home. His victory margin over 2nd-place UW's IAN BORMETT was 2:24, and 3:17 in front of bronze medalist JOSH MORK, one of region's most accomplished tri star.

University of Iowa's LAUREN STEINKE, who is originally from St. Cloud, edged out likely 2021 Most Improved nominee KATIE DEREGNIER for the Olympic win. With her PR effort, KRISTINA SWENSON placed 3rd. ...

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Cookies, Cartwheels & a T-Rex...

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By Doobie Kurus

Women of all ages came out for the inaugural 4WOMEN Tri at beautiful Lake Ann in Chan last Sunday, including Heidi Schrad of Eden Prairie, who carried her daughter across the finish line. Over 100 women registered for the event, including a field of nearly 50 in the mini-sprint distance alone.

Bette Rowley, of Burnsville, was the overall winner, with a time of 1:03:47. The youngest competitor was 10 year old, Sabrina Shrestha, who did a cartwheel before coming across the finish line.

On the other end of the age spectrum was Judy "the T-Rex" Rykken, who at age 83, opted to forgo any sort of floor tumbling move and just use the classic "jog" across the timing mat, where the crowd erupted in cheers! Although that may have been for the custom treats from the Cookie Cart, a non-profit that teaches jobs skills for inner city youth by making AWESOME cookies. ...

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Cami & AJ Throw Down at Younglife....

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YOUNGLIFE TRIATHLON COVERAGE - It's a great year for rookies in Minnesota. KARL NYGREN has huge potential, especially in long races. HENRY JESSEN,too, albeit in the shorter stuff. His performances at both Olympic and Sprint Nationals were that of a veteran Elite, not a newcomer.

And then  there's CAMI ECKHOFF (photo)She came into the season with two tri efforts under her belt, both at her hometown Younglife Sprint, which was not enough to constitute a season of racing, thus her eligibility for 2021 Rookie of the Year consideration.

In 2019, Cami posted a respectable 6th place at YL Sprint. Her time was 1:20:03. In 2020, she finished 5th in 1:13:29. Nice trajectory.

On Saturday, she won the race, posting her 2nd win of the season. Her time was 1:05:47. Not since TARA MAKINEN's performances here in 2009 and 2010, has a woman gone that fast in this race. Moreover, her margin of victory was 8:42, and her overall place was 3rd....

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