Faces in Kona: Meet Erich Manser – 2018 Athlete

USABA File Photo – Erich Manser with pilot

Couch to Kona: How one mile at a time led to a dream of Kona

An Ironman triathlon is no small feat. Athletes must endure a 2.4-mile swim, 112-mile bike ride, and finish the race with a 26.2-mile run. The best of the best flood the town of Kona, Hawaii, each October to participate in the Ironman World Championships. One man never thought he would be there. At one point in his life, he did not even think sports were possible for him. Stuck in a rut of preconceived notions and doubts, Erich Manser needed to find freedom. Little did he know, that need for freedom would take him all over the country.

Erich Manser is one of only five para-triathletes set to take on the Ironman World Championships in October this year after being selected via the Physically Challenged Athlete lottery. Currently, this is the only way for athletes with physical disabilities, with the exception of hand cyclists who have a qualifying circuit of races, to qualify for the World Championships in Kona.

Read the full article here

 

Get to Know our 2018 Team Colorado Kona Athletes

A.J. JOHNSON

My best friend who I coached qualified for Kona via the Legacy Program. Sadly, he passed suddenly on April 19 and I am racing in his honor. The full story can be found on the D3 Multisport website.

*What kind of bike do you ride? Bike – Alchemy – This is Joe’s bike. He was 6’3″ and I’m 5’10” Thankfully the guys at Colorado Multisport were able to fit me to the bike well enough.

*Where did you qualify for the Ironman World Championships? Qualified via invitation from IM

*How many Ironman races have you done?

*How many times have you raced Kona? I’ve raced Kona 3 times – 04, 05, 06.

*What is your favorite non-race activity on the Big Island – if you have not been – what non-race activity are you most excited about? Snorkeling with the turtles, coffee tours, cliff jumping.

*What is your favorite bike training route? Heading south towards Captain Cook.

*What is your favorite post workout/post race treat? Giant burger

*What was one unexpected occurrence on your path to Kona? This whole experience this year was unexpected. I found in June that I would be racing.

*Who do you think will win the pro men’s and women’s races this year? Winners: Frodeno and Ryf. Lionel Sanders with Frodeno out.

 

KRISTIN LOUDERBACK

1. What kind of bike do you ride? Cervelo P2

2. Where did you qualify for IM World Champs? IM Boulder

3. How many IM races have you done? 2 full Ironman (2013 Coeur d’Alene in 13:10; 2018 Boulder in 10:23) 2 IM 70.3 (2018 Florida in April and Steelhead in August)…. and Harvest Moon in 2011 or so
I focused on the marathon for the past few years, trying to qualify for the Trials. Came kinda close 2:48 in 2015, but kept getting hurt during subsequent tries, so finally last winter I decided to put that on hold and do a 70.3, then IM… and now I’m hooked 😉 Anyway that’s why I don’t have a ton of IM race experience.

4. How many times have you raced Kona? ZERO. When I did my first Ironman in 2013 I don’t even know if I knew what Kona was, except it was for fast people and I didn’t need to worry about qualifying.

5. What is your favorite non-race activity on the Big Island? I haven’t raced Kona before, but my now husband (then boyfriend!) qualified 2 years ago so I’ve been there during IM week. We are both pumped about the plentiful availability of yummy açaí bowls and shave ice. We just got married in July (a month after we both did IM Boulder) and one of us had to qualify to get us to a honeymoon in Hawaii. Glad I pulled through ; ) We are staying the week after for a little R&R to enjoy the Big Island! Maybe a few little hikes and beach/water activities, but mostly just relaxing sounds amazing (I say that now…. when I get there might be a different story haha!)

6. What is your favorite bike training route? I didn’t ride a bike for almost 5 years, so when I decided to get back into triathlon in December, I got a new bike (much much better than my old road bike!). I only had a few months of riding outside before IM Boulder, since it wasn’t warm enough to ride until about March/April… so I only rode the course. Might as well learn every crack and turn and climb since it’s in my backyard. Over and over and over again. Now I’ve ventured off of the IM course and LOVE LOVE LOVE doing repeats up Lefthand Canyon. The best is to see how fast I can get from Greenbriar to the split to Ward.

7. Favorite post workout/race treat? Fro-yo, only after a race. Sometimes I have some gummy bears or other gummy snacks as a treat on Sundays, but this close to race day it’s time to focus and keep it clean. But I can’t WAIT for some fro-yo after the race!!

8. One unexpected occurrence on your path to Kona? Hmmm I don’t know, I guess getting interviewed for a podcast! Kona Kamps. That was cool. Otherwise I can’t say anything has been terribly unexpected.

9. Who will win pro races? Who I am rooting for: Rinny and Tim, of course!!!! Who will probably win: Daniela and Lionel. Lucy will be in the mix too, for sure.

Get To Know Our 2018 Team Colorado Kona Athletes

KYLE HUGHES

*What kind of bike do you ride? I ride a dark blue Cervelo P2 with black HED wheels. White Rudy project helmet with visor. Will have white hat on during run.

*Where did you qualify for the Ironman World Championships? I won a spot at Kona through the Ironman lottery drawing. So got super lucky.

*How many Ironman races have you done? This will actually be my first full Ironman. I have done a couple half iron races including the Boulder 70.3 in August.

*How many times have you raced Kona? This will be my first time racing Kona.

*What is your favorite non-race activity on the Big Island – if you have not been – what non-race activity are you most excited about? I Have been to big island several times and really like to go coffee tasting at some of the plantations. Also like to go watch the lava flow into the ocean from Kilauea before the sun comes up, really cool to see. Kona brewery is a mandatory stop as well.

*What is your favorite bike training route? My favorite training ride route is anything on the rural roads outside of Boulder. Great roads with bike friendly drivers.

*What is your favorite post workout/post race treat? Best post race treat is a huge cheeseburger and a beer at Avery Brewery.

*What was one unexpected occurrence on your path to Kona? The most unexpected occurrence on my road to Kona is that I actually get to race Kona! I couldn’t believe my ears when I got the call from Ironman saying I had won.

*Who do you think will win the pro men’s and women’s races this year? Before today’s news that Jan Frodeno was out with a stress fracture I would have picked him to win the men’s race, now I will go with Lionel Sanders for the men Daniela Ryf for the women’s race, but I will be pulling for Mirinda Carfrae.

BOB McRAE

*What kind of bike do you ride? -Dimond

*Where did you qualify for the Ironman World Championships? -IM-Boulder

*How many Ironman races have you done? -Full IM’s: 16

*How many times have you raced Kona? -4x: 2007, 2014, 2015, 2016

*What is your favorite non-race activity on the Big Island – if you have not been – what non-race activity are you most excited about? -Spending some much needed down-time with the family after

*What is your favorite bike training route? -The IM-Boulder routes

*What is your favorite post workout/post race treat? -Recently, it’s become a warmed cheese danish and two sausage and cheddar sandwiches from Starbucks

*What was one unexpected occurrence on your path to Kona? -Being sidetracked with illness and rediscovering health — a few times! It’s given me a new appreciation for health and hunger for the pursuit of personal perfection

*Who do you think will win the pro men’s and women’s races this year? -Women: easy…Ryf -Men: I hope it’s Sanders

Get To Know Our 2018 Team Colorado Kona Athletes

DIANA HASSEL

What kind of bike do you ride? I got a new Felt IA2 this year!

Where did you qualify for the Ironman World Championships? Qualified at Ironman Hawaii last year – 1st W50-54

How many Ironman races have you done? 20

How many times have you raced Kona? This will be number 16

What is your favorite non-race activity on the Big Island – if you have not been – what non-race activity are you most excited about? Every year we rent boats out of Honokohau Harbor with our good buddies and whoever else wants to join and head to Captain Cook’s to snorkel and swim with the dolphins

What is your favorite bike training route? Fort Collins – Masonville – Eden Valley – Carter Lake – Hygeine – and back

What is your favorite post workout/post race treat? Ice cream

What was one unexpected occurrence on your path to Kona? So far, no big surprises!

Who do you think will win the pro men’s and women’s races this year? Daniela is likely to dominate if she has a decent day, but I think Rinny will be on her tail this year, ready to pounce if anything goes wrong. My dream is for Tim O’Donnell to win, but if I had money on it, I would bet on the rookie, Javier Gomez.

 

ANDY POTTS (PRO)

*What kind of bike do you ride? CEEPO

*Where did you qualify for the Ironman World Championships? All over the world; USA, Peru, Austria, Ireland, Taiwan (I had to earn points)

*How many Ironman races have you done? I’ve never counted but quite a few, over twenty for sure

*How many times have you raced Kona? 2018 is the 11th time I’ve qualified to race Kona

*What is your favorite non-race activity on the Big Island – if you have not been – what non-race activity are you most excited about? Throwing the football on the beach with my son

*What is your favorite bike training route? Pikes Peak

*What is your favorite post workout/post race treat? Smoothie with Infinit’s Repair

*What was one unexpected occurrence on your path to Kona? The journey to Kona is never easy and everyone hits road bumps. This year involved a lot of travel and it is stressful to leave your livelihood up the the fine folks who work in the baggage departments of airlines. So, when I can I always use TriBike Transport!

*Who do you think will win the pro men’s and women’s races this year? Not sure but I’m excited to find out!

Get to Know our 2018 Team Colorado Kona Athletes

PAUL DAUBER

*What kind of bike do you ride? Ventum One (special blue paint)

*Where did you qualify for the Ironman World Championships? Ironman AZ

*How many Ironman races have you done? 15

*How many times have you raced Kona? 3X (including a DNF which I still can’t get over)

*What is your favorite non-race activity on the Big Island – if you have not been – what non-race activity are you most excited about? snorkeling with my kids (4 of them)

*What is your favorite bike training route? I live in east denver so i head out east towards 36/gun hill road and that area

*What is your favorite post workout/post race treat? peanut butter and ice cream

*What was one unexpected occurrence on your path to Kona? I just moved to denver a year ago so everything about training at high altitude blows me away

*Who do you think will win the pro men’s and women’s races this year? I wish I could be less boring but Daniella Ryff and Jan Frodeno

 

SANDI WIEBE

*What kind of bike do you ride? Ride QR PR5 black/red

*Where did you qualify for the Ironman World Championships? Qualified at Ironman Los Cabos last November

*How many Ironman races have you done? I’ve completed 33 ironman races

*How many times have you raced Kona? This is my 14th trip to Kona with 13 finishes; had to drop last year on bike due to kidney stone, couldn’t ride in the “fetal” position.

*What is your favorite non-race activity on the Big Island – if you have not been – what non-race activity are you most excited about? Enjoy snorkeling with spinner dolphins

*What is your favorite bike training route? Favorite bike training route is the serpentine ie Jay to 36, down neva 63rd, up nelson to 36 down st vrain to 75th up hygiene to 36 down to Ute hwy and back via 75th

*What was one unexpected occurrence on your path to Kona? Not being injured heading into Kona

*Who do you think will win the pro men’s and women’s races this year? I think Jan Frodeno and Daniela Ryf will win again, they’re looking strong this year, especially after World’s in South Africa.

Get to Know our Team Colorado Kona 2018 Athletes

SIMON BUTTERWORTH

*What kind of bike do you ride? Dimond, easy to spot, a beam bike

*Where did you qualify for the Ironman World Championships? Kona, won AG last year

*How many Ironman races have you done? 24

*How many times have you raced Kona? 13

*What is your favorite non-race activity on the Big Island – if you have not been – what non-race activity are you most excited about? Swimming in open water with the fish, and sometimes dolphins.

*What is your favorite bike training route? For a short high intensity workout the extreme south end of Alii Dr, all new road with wide shoulder and some hills that will get your attention.

*What is your favorite post workout/post race treat? A Guinness at Quinn’s (across the street from the King Kam) and ice cream at a new (last year) ice cream parlor behind Lava Java.

*What was one unexpected occurrence on your path to Kona? Started to develop arthritis in my joints in mid 40’s. Never dreamed I could complete a Marathon even after 4 years of short course racing. The knees somehow hang in there, just.

*Who do you think will win the pro men’s and women’s races this year? (Remember…we have several Colorado pros on our Team!) I would have to root for Rinni since I met her in Boulder when she first came here. And for similar reasons Matt Charbott who is a neighbor.

 

JEFF SANKOFF

*What kind of bike do you ride? Trek Speed Concept with a custom paint job. Quite distinctive. Black with red maple leaves cascading down the top and down tubes (I am Canadian in CO for 15 years)

*Where did you qualify for the Ironman World Championships? IM Boulder

*How many Ironman races have you done? 4

*How many times have you raced Kona? First timer!

*What is your favorite non-race activity on the Big Island – if you have not been – what non-race activity are you most excited about? I am a diver so I would have to say anything SCUBA related. After the race we are staying on the island for a week and taking our kids on a Manta dive and a dolphin swim. I am pretty excited for them to do both of these things. Since they have given so much for me to be able to race and train, I love to give them whatever experiences I can that will reward them for their sacrifices.

*What is your favorite bike training route? For TT riding I really love the stretch of road between Sedalia and Palmer Lake. For road riding and climbing I love to do a loop from Morrison up to Meyers Gulch to Turkey Creek to Bear Mountain then down to Evergreen and back to Morrison.

*What is your favorite post workout/post race treat? Probably ice cream. Though I don’t drink very much during training and race season so a cold beer gets in there after a race every once in a while and is very much enjoyed.

*What was one unexpected occurrence on your path to Kona? There isn’t just one! My road to Kona is a story unto itself that spans my 17 years in triathlon and began when I told the friend who introduced me to the sport “Are you nuts?! I am never going to do THAT race!!! (Hawaii)” And now, here I am.

*Who do you think will win the pro men’s and women’s races this year? (Remember…we have several Colorado pros on our Team!) I’m Canadian so I have to pull for my boy Lionel though it is likely not the smart choice. Similarly, I would love to see Lucy Charles breakthrough and win even though I know it will likely be the Swiss automaton yet again (Ryf).

Meet our Team Colorado Kona 2018 Athletes

Jeff Beckman on course at the Cleveland Olympic Triathlon

JEFF BECKMAN

*What kind of bike do you ride? Trek Speed Concept, black with red letters

*Where did you qualify for the Ironman World Championships?  Lake placid IM where I won the 45-49 age group

*How many Ironman races have you done? 5 full and 7 half’s (70.3)

*How many times have you raced Kona? Once before last year

*What is your favorite non-race activity on the Big Island – if you have not been – what non-race activity are you most excited about?  SUP around the coast and drinking Kona coffee

*What is your favorite bike training route? A modified Lariat loop:  Morrison-Kittredge-Evergreen to Golden

*What is your favorite post workout/post race treat? Vanilla milkshake

*What was one unexpected occurrence on your path to Kona?  I was able to enter the Loveland Lake to Lake triathlon sprint relay with my two sons, my 11 yr old on the swim and 8 yr old on the run with dad to hang out in transition.  My boys were the youngest two racing that day. As this was their first timed triathlon event, I offered to accompany them during the race. My 11 yr refused, saying he didn’t want me to slow him down in the water and wanted me to save my legs to “go super hard” on the bike.  My 8 yr old wanted to run the last mile alone to finish the race like his older brother did the swim. Surprisingly, we won the sprint relay and came in 13th overall with a time that would have won my age group. This was by far my favorite race of the season and triathlon experience for that matter and I was tremendously proud of my boys and grateful for my wife’s support that day.  Also, it was great to meet Rich that day and appreciate his coverage of the event and interview – my boys felt on top of the world!

*Who do you think will win the pro men’s and women’s races this year? (Remember…we have several Colorado pros on our Team!) I’m routing for Tim Don and Miranda Carfrae, both truly inspiring athletes in different ways

 

John Van Soest completing Ironman 2018

JOHN VAN SOEST

*What kind of bike do you ride? Bike – older (~2009) black, silver and white Cervelo P3 on Zipp 808

*Where did you qualify for the Ironman World Championships? I’m racing via a legacy slot

*How many Ironman races have you done? Kona will be number 15

*How many times have you raced Kona? This will be my first time racing in Kona. I’ve been twice to spectate

*What is your favorite non-race activity on the Big Island – if you have not been – what non-race activity are you most excited about?  My favorite activity is tough, maybe swimming with dolphins

*What is your favorite post workout/post race treat? pizza or a shake

*What was one unexpected occurrence on your path to Kona? –  I’d have to say it isn’t triathlon specific.  I lost my mother in January and father in April which has just created a lot of load on top of training and racing in Ironman Maastricht, which I did in August, and prepping for this.

*Who do you think will win the pro men’s and women’s races this year? (Remember…we have several Colorado pros on our Team!) I’d love to see Mirinda and Tim win together!  I think Patrick Lange and Daniela are tough to overlook.

 

Kick-Off to Kona 2018

By Bill Plock, Publisher/President of 303Endurance Network

KONA….It’s a powerful word, especially in the triathlon community. No other amateur event evokes the same recognition and credibility that comes with competing at the Ironman World Champions in Kona. 303Triathlon is excited to bring you 30 days of stories, athlete interviews, podcasts, pictures and of course up to the minute coverage of the race on October 13th.

It started 40 years ago. The stories and legends have many Colorado ties. The “Iron Wars” between Boulder’s Dave Scott and Mark Allen, come to mind. The last American male to win at Kona, Tim DeBoom resides in Boulder as well.

This year, 38 amateurs and nine pro’s from Colorado will compete and we plan to bring you their stories and share the experience overall. We have many coaches, industry leaders and personalities we hope to catch up with on the Big Island and give you their insights and why’s.

Colorado has a strong pro field. Ben Hoffman, a native growing up in Grand Junction finished second a couple of years ago has aims at the podium. As does new (ish) mom, Mirinda Carfrae (3x World Champion) and her husband Tim O’Donnell along with Tyler Butterfield, Matt Chrabot, Kirsty Jahn, Lesley Smith, Tim Don and Andy Potts.

As amateurs, Colorado has more per capita athletes than any state and the third most overall. We will share stories from athletes such as Diana Hassel and Simon Butterworth who will defend their titles as best in the world in their age groups along with those from others vying to meet their goals and make their Kona dreams come true.

We have an exciting list of sponsors who make this coverage possible; Infinit Nutrition, Couer Sports and Boulder’s Base Performance will be at our side. 303 will have five people, all Ironman Finishers bring you “boots on the ground” coverage; Bill Plock, Khem Suthiwan, Rich Soares, Kim Welk and Alison Freeman.

You will find part of our 303Triathlon page dedicated to Kona coverage and please like us on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter for even more. Our hope is to bring you behind the scenes, introduce you to some remarkable people, companies and organizations all celebrating the 40th anniversary of the Ironman World Championships!

 

Colorado Athletes in Kona: Noone and Campbell

Nick Noone

 

I did my first triathlon when I was twelve years old on a whim, It was called the “YMCA Strong Kids Triathlon” and I only knew it existed because my neighbors were signed up. I did not do another triathlon for a handful of years following that first one as I needed some time to forget about how I almost drowned and threw up simultaneously during the 100 meter swim. As a high school runner and swimmer it was on my radar as a possible progression of my athletic career. At the University of Colorado I raced on the triathlon team for 4 years and solidified my love of the sport. I always said I would never race an Ironman but following  Every Man Jack team camp in February I softened to the idea as it provided a great opportunity to spend more time with my teammates. Later my Dad mentioned he would love to go to Hawaii and I was pretty much sold. A few months later I was on the start line at Ironman Santa Rosa.

Olympic is my favorite distance to race, short and sweet.

This will be my first time racing in Kona and I am super excited to be doing so as a member of the Every Man Jack Triathlon Team


Iain Campbell

Iain started his endurance sports journey back in 2010 during a family vacation to Machu Pichu where he realized that through his focus on a Corporate career that the fitness of his youth had long since dissipated, so started a commitment to fitness and running and in turn Triathlon. Iain now lives in Boulder Colorado where he is Managing Director at the Rocky Mountain Institute, a non-profit working to hasten a transition to a clean energy system. Iain has completed the last 5 Boston Marathons, 5 full Ironman events with his second appearance at Kona coming up in 2017.

Colorado Athletes in Kona: Amazing and Strong Women Represent Colorado

Kirsten McCay

 

In 2001, after I finished my first ironman triathlon, I wanted to qualify for the World Championships in Kona. I started watching it on TV every year and although it seemed like it would never be within my reach, I still secretly hoped that one day with enough dedication, persistence, consistency, and hard work, I could one day race in Kona.
Over the next 12 years, I did 10 ironman distance triathlons and typically placed between 20th and 40th in my age group. This was far from the place I needed to qualify for Kona, but I kept working toward my big dream of racing on the big island.

 

In 2013 when they announced a new ironman in Tahoe that was high altitude, hilly, and hard, I decided I was going to put everything I had into training and go for it! On July 1, 2013 I moved to Tahoe for the next 12 weeks to train on the course every single day.

Race day came, I placed third in my age group, which earned me a spot to the 2014 World Championships.
I had a hard race that year in Kona, mostly because I felt like I didn’t deserve to be there. I felt like it was a fluke that I even qualified in the first place because almost half the girls in my age group in Tahoe DNF’d from the cold and harsh conditions. I left Kona feeling defeated and I swore I would never do that race again!

But then two years ago I decided I wanted to try to qualify one more time. To be honest, it was mostly to prove to myself that I could. I made a two year goal to qualify at the 2017 Boulder Ironman.


I was aging up in 2017, so the first year I did Boulder in 2016 was just to see how the course was, how I placed, and to see what I needed to work on for 2017. That year I PR’d by over an hour and placed fifth in my age group This gave me the confidence to go for it in 2017.

Race day came, I ended up winning my age group, earning a spot to Kona, and here I am!!

I feel worthy, I feel deserving, I feel strong and fast and ready to have the best race that I can possibly have this year.
My goal this year is to have fun, to finish the race feeling like I truly gave it all I had, and to know that I deserve to be an athlete in the World Championships Ironman race.

 


Kristine Reinhardt

I always seem to be bringing up the rear these days, with never enough time to get it all done. I took up triathlons in 2014 when I joined my husband and friend on a “pinky swear” to sign-up for IRONMAN Boulder’s inaugural year (2014). Probably not one of the smarter things I have done because I was completely blind to what a challenge it would be. Don’t get me wrong, I knew all about IRONMAN, I just had never actually swam, biked or ran for anything. In my “dreams” I was always very fast and usually always won, but as I started training reality kicked in and I realized I just might be in over my head (this was no dream)! To make the commitment more meaningful, I decided to race for a cause through the IRONMAN Foundation. Well, I did race IRONMAN Boulder 2014, but I was far from first. In fact, I was second to last in crossing the finish line and hearing Mike Reilly call out “Kristine Reinhardt, you are an IRONMAN!” I had finished with 66 seconds to spare before a DNF! My coach at the time was, Tim Hola, and I remember him saying “you sure did cut it close.”


Well, I couldn’t have IM Boulder be my one and done. I unsuccessfully tried IRONMAN Cabo in 2015 and missed a bike cutoff. In 2016, I decided I would give IMAZ a try but under the IRONMAN Foundation flag. I really believe that racing for a cause was my calling. I started the year with contacting all my friends and family and encouraging them to give to a great cause while I raced as a back of the pack triathlete trying to make a difference. However, 2016 didn’t go as planned. The spring found me battling skin cancer and recovering from surgery and in the fall, my business partner of 27 years had a brain aneurism (he passed away this year). I never made it to the starting line of IMAZ! However, I was not deterred from finishing the task at hand – to raise money for the IRONMAN Foundation. In November I was notified that I was close to being the top fundraiser for the Foundation. Well, that is all it took. I spent two months contacting people every day selling them on why they should donate to IMF. As it turns out, I ended up being the #1 fundraiser for the Foundation in the Americas, which resulted in a slot to Kona! Unbelievable!

I have spent 2017 working with an amazing coach, Alison Freeman, from D3 Multisport. I have the best support system anyone could ask for in my incredible husband and 5 kids! We will be making the journey to Hawaii as a family and Alison. Crossing the finish line in Kona will prove that Anything is Possible!

Read the D3Multisport team highlight HERE

 


Cheryl Weill

 

Kona’s oldest female competitor this year is swimming in a fountain of youth

Among those getting the senior citizen discount, most say old age began in their 60s. But don’t tell 72-year-old Cheryl Weill that. 60? That’s when she learned how to swim.

“I first became aware of Ironman in the 1980s,” Weill reflects, “but at the time I was busy with my career in neuroscience. I didn’t get serious about triathlon until 2004.”

Weill, who had been a runner and cyclist since her college days, decided to use her newfound free time in retirement to finally indulge her multisport interests. “A friend I met cycling encouraged me to give it a try. All I had to do was become a swimmer, so at 60 years of age, I started swimming.”

Weill jumped into the pool and discovered a fountain of youth. She gets a lot of energy from the people who surround her: As one can imagine, there aren’t too many other 70-year-old triathletes training with her. “I train with a local Masters swim group,” says Weill, who lives in Fort Collins, Colo. “My partner also does triathlons, and sometimes I can train with her, but she is 55 and faster than me.”

Some might assume her age also offers an advantage in Kona qualifying. After all, she was the only person in her age group at Ironman Maryland in 2016, automatically earning a Kona spot simply for finishing. But that only distracts from her 13:59:02 finishing time, a respectable performance at any age.

Reposted from triathlete.com