Almost 200 compete in fourth annual Blaine Triathlon

Hagen-Eric-140x140
Staff Writer
I cover the cities of Andover, Blaine and Ramsey. I have worked at ABC Newspapers since August 2007.

The water was pleasant, not icy, and the weather itself started chilly before growing warmer as the fourth annual Blaine Triathlon came to a conclusion this past Saturday, Sept. 12, at Lakeside Commons Park.

After completing a 0.3-mile swim, competitors went on a 16.7-mile bike ride. Photos by Eric Hagen
After completing a 0.3-mile swim, competitors went on a 16.7-mile bike ride. Photos by Eric Hagen

According to Nate Monahan, the city of Blaine employee who headed the organization of this event, 210 people registered and 184 completed the course that included a 0.3-mile swim, 16.7-mile bike race and concludes with a 3.5-mile run.

While lower registration than previous years may have been due to people forgetting the event date change, Monahan said he got a lot of emails from people complementing him on how well organized the event was and asking that this annual tradition continue.

“For me, it’s a good friendly competition. We’re motivated by maintaining our health,” said 55-year-old Dave Lundquist, of Blaine, who has competed in 200-mile bike races but at the Blaine Triathlon only did the bike ride while leaving the swim to 25-year-old Eagan resident Paul Koob and the running to his Blaine neighbor Bob Ziebol, 52.

From now on, the Blaine Triathlon will be in September. The first three years between 2012 and 2014 it was held in May when the water temperature was barely above 50 degrees. This time around for the Sept. 12 competition, the water temp was 68 degrees, Monahan said.

People of varying ages and athletic abilities came together for this timed competition that was divided into different age groups and somewhat by talent level. The youngest competitor to finish was 15-year-old Peter Matern, of Blaine, while the oldest person to finish was 73-year-old Clark Worthington, of St. Louis Park.

Koob, Lundquist and Ziebol had the fastest time of any team at 1 hour, 17 minutes, 53 seconds.

The top 10 competitors who raced on their own all finished in under 1 hour, 21 minutes. The average age of the top 10 was 41.3 and included eight men and two women. The fastest woman and youngest competitor to finish in the top 10 was 29-year-old Christina Roberts, of St. Louis Park.

Chris Tatton, 38, of Blaine, had the fastest individual time at 1 hour, 11 minutes, 8 seconds. This was 3 1/2 minutes faster than any other individual competitor.

Tatton has competed in all four Blaine Triathlons and does six to seven triathlons a year, including the standard “Olympic distance” triathlons that consist of a 0.93-mile swim, 25-mile bike ride and 6.2-mile run. He has also competed in Ironman events that include a 2.4-mile swim, 112-mile bike ride and 26.2-mile run, which is the same running distance as a marathon.

“I’m competitive,” Tatton said when asked why he likes to do this.

Tatton, a 1995 Coon Rapids High School graduate, was only on the downhill ski team in high school and never on the cross country or track team. He does a lot of his training in Blaine, swimming at the Foss Swim School and working out at Fitness Pros.

Over the past 10 years, 65-year-old Lindsay Nauen, of St. Paul, said she lost half her weight by going on a strict diet and exercise regimen.

“It’s saved her life,” her husband of 40 years Richard Weil, 64, said.

Nauen competed in her first triathlon eight years ago and loves that she does not have to run every day, which saves her joints from the constant pounding that comes from long-distance running.

“The training is fun. I never get bogged down with triathlons. If I don’t feel like running, I can bike or swim,” she said.

Nauen said there’s usually two different types of competitors at these triathlons.

“There’s the elite group that is off in their own different world and then there’s us old farts. But everyone helps each other,” she said.

Blaine neighbors Crosby Warren, 37, and Matt Herrmann, 34, have both competed in six triathlons including the past two Blaine Triathlons.

Warren said “the adrenaline of race day” and personally challenging himself is why he races.

“We’re always nervous at this moment, but when you’re done it’s a sense of accomplishment physically and mentally,” he said. “And our reward is cracking open a beer at 10:30 a.m. to celebrate.”

Blaine Triathlon competitors sprint into the water at Lakeside Commons Park for the fourth annual Blaine Triathlon Sept. 12. The race started with a 0.3-mile swim. Shanna Miller, 31, of Maple Grove, adjusts her goggles before getting ready to dive into the Lakeside Commons Park lake. After completing a 0.3-mile swim, competitors went on a 16.7-mile bike ride. Melissa Dean, 45, of Ham Lake, takes a turn onto the shoulder of 125th Avenue during the bike race portion of the Blaine Triathlon. After completing a 0.3-mile swim and a 16.7-mile bike ride, Andover resident Ryan Sahlberg, 34, went on a 3.5-mile run. The fastest team time of 1 hour, 17 minutes, 53 seconds included Blaine residents (left) Bob Ziebol, 52, and (right) Dave Lundquist, 55, and 25-year-old Eagan resident Paul Koob. The fastest person at the fourth annual Blaine triathlon was 38-year-old Blaine resident Chris Tatton with a time of 1 hour, 11 minutes, 8 seconds. Matt Ten Napel, 38, of Ham Lake, raises his arms to get as much air into his lungs as possible after completing the Blaine Triathlon. Nate Monahan gives instructions prior to the start of the Blaine Triathlon Sept. 12 at Lakeside Commons Park. Monahan works in the city’s parks department and led organization of this fourth annual event. Swimmers prepare to get into the water at Lakeside Commons Park’s beach. The water temperature was 68 degrees, much better than the barely above 50 degrees it had been in previous years when the Blaine Triathlon was in May. Jane Johnson pushes Hanna Maslowski, 18, both who live in Blaine, in the bike race. Maslowski was born with cerebeal palsy.  Tessa Brandt also competed on "Team Hanna." Submitted photo Kiri Solberg, of Blaine, and her sons Maren, 6, and Clayton, 8, cheer on the Blaine Triathlon athletes. Anthony Leon, 31, of Blaine, takes his bike to the starting line after completing the swim. Alicia Edmonds, 30, of Columbia Heights, in the midst of the 16.7-mile bike race. Jason Martin, 36, of East Bethel. Jennifer Cornett, 36, of Blaine. Jane Johnson pushes Hanna Maslowski, 18, both who live in Blaine, in the bike race. Maslowski was born with cerebeal palsy.  Tessa Brandt also competed on "Team Hanna." Previn Solberg, 40, of Blaine. Supports of 18-year-old Hanna Maslowski at the corner of 125th Avenue and Harpers Street. Dorothy Hagen, 50, of Big Lake. Jennifer Cornett, 36, of Blaine. Mike Abel, 47, of Sartell. Chris Hasling, 32, of Blaine. Henrique Cubarenco, 36, of Blaine. Matthew Hermann, 34, of Blaine. Jared Hall, 35, of Fargo. Rich Heilman, 50, of Lakeville; Christina Roberts, 29, of St. Louis Park; Chris Tatton, 38, of Blaine; and Andrew Zabel, 35, of Sartell, look at the results after the race. Amond Neuville, 51, of Coon Rapids. Jason Rogowski, 33, of Maple Grove. Sarah Schutta, of Blaine, gives a participation medal to Rob Madquick, 50, of Sauk Rapids.
<
>
Swimmers prepare to get into the water at Lakeside Commons Park’s beach. The water temperature was 68 degrees, much better than the barely above 50 degrees it had been in previous years when the Blaine Triathlon was in May.

eric.hagen@ecm-inc.com