Race Coverage

Doritos & Sprinklers....


By Mario Minelli

The Wingman Triathlon. This will be more of a race course/venue review rather than a personal recap.  Or maybe a mash-up of the two...  

I believe the Wingman Triathlon started in 2009, the year after I did my first tri. It's only about an hour long drive from where I live and I've always wanted give it a shot. The problem was that it usually fell on the same weekend as the Festival in the Park Run, a race in Kasson, MN, where I reside.  I like to support local events and I'm not one for doing two races in one weekend so I always passed on the Wingman--until this year.  So I raced in the 5k on Saturday (August 10), then the Wingman Tri the following day.  I did, however, pass on the Festival's Twinkie eating contest that would have made for a triple event weekend.

 I entertained the idea of taking it easy in Saturdays race, but we all know it's hard to hold back.  And for triathletes who race a variety of distances, a 5k is about as short as it gets in a swim-bike-run event.  So...I ran pretty hard in the 5k.  Surprisingly, I felt ok Sunday morning for the Wingman.  My friend Tom and I got to the race venue, Red Wing's Colvill Park, about an hour before the 8am start time. We were setting up our transition areas when Tom realized he forgot one minor piece of equipment:  goggles. This would be his second tri. His other being Rochesterfest a couple years ago so he was a little rusty.

Then the sprinkler system at the park started blasting water into the transition area getting many people wet before the swim, or for the swim depending on how you look at it.  A friendly athlete next to Tom had a spare pair of goggles and the sprinkler issue was soon resolved.  ...

"Looking Forward to Next Year"....


By Ashley Hall

GREAT UP NORTH TRIATHLON - Have you ever had the chance to hang a medal on a triathlete’s neck? It’s truly the best part of the event! I shed many happy tears, hugs and celebrations with the triathletes as they crossed the finish line. Every ounce of worry, doubt and stressful moments leading up to The Great Up North Triathlon was worth it the second the medals started being handed out. We had 49 individuals and 5 teams cross our finish line; each dripping not only with sweat but with feelings of pride and accomplishment. Some even had the chance celebrating with their loved ones at the finish line! 

We have experience in planning non-profit fundraising events, hosting athletic camps, running our own business and coaching, but nothing quite compares to organizing a triathlon. We had the opportunity to meet triathletes from all over the Midwest and Canada and competitors of all ages and levels; each with their own story and their own “why” of competing.

We had many first timers, some who already have aspirations of competing in more triathlons and some who just wanted to check it off their list. Our first place male for 19 and under was up from Florida for the summer and considers himself a competitive swimmer, but we think he may have a future in triathlons. Our youngest competitor was 13 and completed the race completely on her own as a last minute decision to give it a try...

A Very Special Performance!


The Minnesota Multisport Honors Committee has been closely following the 2019 Rookie of the Year frontrunners. We're talking about two very special women, CARYN HERRICK and PAIGE SCHULZ.

Before last weekend, the ROY race was basically too close to call. Both women had already established themselves at long distances, then Herrick rocked a 3rd place finish at Heart of the Lakes, giving her a prohibitive edge. Paige had yet to demonstrate similar aptitude in a short race.

Then Schulz rocked a 3rd at Chisago, in 4:42:17 no less, while Herrick placed 5th there in 4:51:01. So, if there was any advantage that Caryn enjoyed in the weeks beteen HOLT and Chisago, it evaporated.

Most Committee members were now favoring Paige because she had won a head-to-head confrontation with Caryn...

Pursued by Fire Breathing Rubber Duckies...


By Christina Roberts

IGNITE SWIMRUN RACE REPORT- This past weekend, I teamed up with Corey Towle to successfully defend our title in the IGNITE MN SwimRun race up at Cuyuna regional park! We raced the long course which totaled just over 17 miles of swimming and running. There were 9 run legs ranging from 0.02 to 3.9 miles and 8 swim legs ranging from 0.15 to 1 mile. The runs weren’t too technical but they required focus to avoid falling and leaving a little blood on the trail, which happened to nearly every team out there. Every single mile was an adventure. And we smiled and laughed (mostly at our botched transitions) every single mile. It was so much fun. IGNITE put on an awesome race!  ...

Hello. Goodbye.



SUPERIOR MAN TRIATHLON - After watching ALEXANDER MUNDT, a Danish grad student / swim coach currently residing in St. Cloud, race at Buffalo Olympic, we were sure he was going to be our state's next (male) tri star. Blowing everyone out of the water, then beating a Who's Who of our region's elite athletes en route to a podium finish turned some heads, certainly ours. 


We were anxious to watch him race again, though two months would pass before we got that opportunity. And once again, he didn't disappoint. This  time he blew the entire field away at the 8th annual Superior Man Half IM.

How blown away? His 4:10:50 was 14:12 better than the next two guys, Minneapolis' PATRICK CROWE and Ontario's KRIS NISULA, who turned in identical runner-up clockings. Nisula, 43, was coming off a win at Brewhouse Sprint, a performance that was preceded by a 3rd place finish at Timberman Olympic. 


It's quite possible that Kris will be the second foreign athlete (after JON BALABUCK, also of Thunder Bay) to be considered for a post-season MMH nomination....

Youth Excel at Green Lake...


GREEN LAKE TRIATHLON - A total of 281 athletes crossed the events' finish lines last Sunday after having endured the most turbulent swim in the race's 16-year history. Wave starts had to be elongated to allow previous waves to get far enough down the course before the next wave could be launched. (It took 53 minutes to get everyone in the water; not the posted 29.) Thirty-five life jackets were delivered to struggling swimmers via jet ski and paddleboards, and when their users either finished, or gotten to the downhill portion of the route, those jackets were delivered to the next group of strugglers.

Triathletes are "endurance animals," of course, thus few complained about the Maytag conditions. 

Despite the chop, and the rather windy conditions, the eventual finish times were surprisingly fast, especially in the Sprint race. Both of the winners--SPENCER SYVERTSON and South Dakota elite master TERESA VAN HYFTE--had raced, and won, here before and were convinced that the run course was a bit short this year. The printed results seemed to support their suspicions . 

As a result, Syvertson's excellent 57:46 could not be an official course record. JOHN SHELP's 58:35, set in 2012, therefore, remains intact.

And Van Hyfte's 1:10:41 would not erase the 50-54W course best (1:13:03) she set in 2018.

Still, both athletes were ecstatic with their performances and and were highly complimentary of the event.

At 22, Syvertson was the "Old Man" of the Sprint podium. His nearest challengers were a pair of talented 16-year-olds, both of whom had been laboring in the shadows of their elite siblings in past years. Placing 2nd was CARSON DEICHMAN (photo L), younger sibling of two-time Junior of the Year...

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