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Triathlon: Green Lake tri’s time of transition

The Sprint Women’s U-35 wave sprints off the beach in front of Zorbaz to start the quarter-mile swim in Green Lake. Nearest camera is age-group winner Claire Larson, 18, of West Des Moines, Iowa. Tribune photo by Rand Middleton.

SPICER — The 10th annual Green Lake Triathlon was a time for transition. Dave Baker made clear (earlier) he was stepping down after 10 years as race director of “Minnesota’s Most Family Friendly (Triathlon) Weekend.”

He announced that Dan Hubbard would be taking over. Hubbard and his wife Janine, operate On the Run promotions in Spicer. Hubbard is also board president of the Glacial Ridge Championship Running Series, a non-profit.

Baker couldn’t have asked for a better day to go out on. The temperature was in the sixties, the lake smooth and mostly sunny.

The number of entries was down, as expected, but still a respectable 229 in the Sprint and 78 (a second year in a row for the longer Olympic). Last year, 267 did the Sprint course. Baker said the newly popular “Mud Runs” are impacting triathlon numbers.

After 10 years, Baker said he will look for something new to do in addition to running his hospitality business. He also introduced Dick Score during the pre-race meeting. Score first brought triathlon racing to Spicer in 1984 with the Fun in the Sun Triathlon that existed for nine years.

Here’s a brief look at the four triathletes who won their respective race:

Sprint-male, Casey Miller, 34, Baxter: Ran the only sub-hour 59:52, third-best time ever this race. A math teacher, who grew up in Wahpeton, N.D., is described as an “elite runner” by race announcer Jerry McNeil (he ran a 2:36 marathon to place fourth at Fargo in May). “This is my first year doing triathlons,” he said. “Running gets to be a drag by late summer. I wanted to try something new. We took our daughter, Madelyn, who is five, to a kids’ tri in Baxter last fall. She had such a good time, she got me started. I bought my first bike two months ago.” He also won the Chase the Police tri at Walker July 27 (247 entrants).

Sprint-female, Teresa Van Hyfte, 47, Hartford, SD: “I was expecting to win again,” said the 2012 women’s Green Lake Tri champ. She was a 1:33 off her first-place time a year ago. She won the Huron (S.D.) Triathlon recently. This was her third Green Lake. She is strongest in the swim. “This is a nice race; it’s my favorite.”

Olympic-male, John Heinlein, III, 24, Stillwater: He ran the Coeur d’ Alene Triathlon in 10:19.11 on June 27, placing fourth age-group. In two weeks, he’ll be at the Louisville Ironman in two weeks. This was his first time at Green Lake. “I heard it was a fine course in a nice town. The roads are wide with not a lot of traffic. I’ll be back next year.” Andy Zabel, 33, of St. Joseph, a regular here, was 2:08 back in second.

Olympic-female, Sarah Berger, 26, St. Paul: Her first-ever win, according to announcer McNeil. She placed sixth at the Buffalo tri, one of Minnesota’s biggest.  No one was close to here Saturday. Stephanie Peterson, 37, of Apple Valley, 10 minutes behind her in second place.

Thirty-eight Sprint Relays compete. First in a time of 1:01.50 was the Willmar trio of Mike McLain (swim), John Seifert (bike) and C.J. Seifter (run).

More photos in Tuesday’s paper, including Saturday’s Kid Tri.

10th annual Green Lake Triathlon

Results Sunday

At Spicer

229 Sprint (¼ swim, 13½ bike, 3 run)

79 Olympic (¾ swim, 22 bike, 6 run)

Sprint top 5males

Casey Miller, 34, Baxter, 59:52; Andy Zabel, 33, St. Joseph 1:02.00;  Robert Brown, Hopkins, 1;02.29; Ted McNamara, 46, Buffalo, 1:03.15; Scotty Erickson, 51, Ramsey, 1:03.31 … Leading area: Jacob Braaten, 20, Glenwood, 1:04.31; Joe Varpness, 17, Montevideo, 1:07.47; Paul Wymar, 41, Montevideo, 1:08.17; Pete Royer, 54, Lithcfield, 1:08.30; Ryan Stoneburner, 34, Paynesville, 1:08.34

Sprint top 5 females

Teresa Van Hyfte, 47, Hartford, SD, 1:11.55; Emily Dunn, 33, Sauk Centre, 1:13.44; Jena Klein, 42, Cold Spring, 1:14.22; Lynn Scheevel, 41, Albert Lea, 1:14.38; Megan Webster, 58, Richfield, 1:14.46 … Leading area: Lyndsey Paffrath-Bice, 28, Paynesville, 1:22.10; Claudia Lenz, 52, Willmar, 1:27.17; Kari Eckhoff, 26, Willmar, 1:27.30; Paula Smith, 35, Willmar, 1:28.03; Melissa Wentzel, 25, Kerkoven, 1:29.58

Olympic top 5 males

John Heinlein III, 24, Stillwater, 1:48.50; Mike Ward, 24, Duluth, 1:51.54; Larry Hosch, 35, St. Joseph, 1:52.30; Tim Bodey, 46, Buffalo, 1:52.23; Ryan Deyounge, 32, Worthington, 1:54.18 …. Leading area: William Lorenz, 41, Benson, 2:13.37; David Haase, 34, Kerkhoven, 2:15.56; Darin Strand, 30, Willmar, 2:17.22

Olympic 5 females

Sarah Berger, 26, St. Paul, 2;02.16; Stephanie Peterson, 37, Apple Valley, 2:12.17; Cheryl Johnson, 41, N. Mankato, 2:12.52; Jodi Sussner, 37, Chaska, 2:14.21; Mandy Stoesz, 28, Buffalo, 2:15.35 … Leading area: Brooke Baeth, 34, Spicer, 2:24.06

Rand Middleton
Tribune photographer/videographer. Began working in radio and at weekly newspaper in Munising, Michigan, in 1972. Started parttime at West Central Daily Tribune Sept. 1974. Fulltime news/sports beginning Feb. 1979. Married to Tribune news clerk Donna (Miller) Middleton, formerly of Kerkhoven. 2 grown children. 
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