Salthouse Shines in First Half Distance Win
In only her second half distance race ever, Aussie and Boulder trainee Ellie Salthouse claimed victory over the weekend at Challenge Melbourne. Salthouse led from start to finish, but it took her until the run to shake off the stiff competition. Luckily, her Australian training has paid off and helped her hit the finish line first.
“It definitely helps that it is summer in Australia right now. It’s always nice to be home with family and friends and training in a familiar environment, but I do really miss Boulder sometimes. I did most of my training in the lead-up to this race alone in Brisbane, which is nice so I can focus on myself and doing things at my own tempo. I knew I was in good form to race but, not having anyone around me in training, I didn’t quite realize it was as good as it was,” Salthouse said.
Salthouse exited the water with eventual second place finisher Natalie Can Coevorden in 26 minutes 18 seconds to lead the women’s race. The two then rode almost identical bike times, but Salthouse beat her into T2 with a bike split of 2 hours 17 minutes 23 seconds. From there, the chase by foot was on!
Salthouse recalls, “When I got off the bike, I didn’t realize I had a little lead into transition, so I was expecting to run out with Natalie. I know from ITU races that she is a very good runner, so when she wasn’t there out of transition, I just told myself not to get too excited too early. I didn’t really have a plan or specific pace-related goal for the run. I didn’t even wear a watch. But I knew from previous weeks of training what it was going to feel like if I was running where I was capable. So I just concentrated on finding that feeling early and settling in.”
Not only did she settle into a pace, but she turned in the fastest run split of the women’s race, 1:23:44, to take the win in an overall time of 4:11:03. After runner-up Van Coevorden finished in 4:15:14, Aussie Carrie Lester rounded out the podium in third with a time of 4:19:50.
“Hopefully that was the first of many more wins to come. It really cemented in my mind that I have made the right decision this year to change from ITU racing to non-draft and half distance racing,” Salthouse added.
I think it’s safe to say we’ll be hearing more about her great racing as 2016 marches on. Congrats on your big win and an awesome race, Ellie!
Griffin Grabs Podium Down Under
Aussie Leon Griffin, who’s been in his hometown of Bendigo since mid-November, has been getting in his training miles back home and it seems to be paying off. This past weekend Griffin made the podium with a third place at Challenge Melbourne. He finished behind winner Todd Skipworth (3:51:13) and runner-up Per Bittner (3:56:05).
Griffin, who has raced Melbourne before, knew it was a fast course. But he wasn’t prepared for the tough winds that slowed everyone down a bit. Despite the weather, Griffin still turned in a solid race, coming out of the water in 25:29, followed by a bike time of 2:11:09, and then turned in the third fastest run split of the day in 1:18:38, for an overall time of 3:58:41.
“The swim might have been a smidge too long, which made for a slower day. However, the weatherman got it wrong and the rain thankfully stayed away, which allowed for the large crowd and a great atmosphere,” Griffin said. “It was nice enough for Harry (his son) to come down this year!”
Boulder will welcome Griffin, wife Merridee, and little Harry back in a couple of weeks where he’ll continue to train for 2016. Get ready for the snow, Griff!
Pros Perform in Panama
Four of Boulder’s finest headed down for the Pan American Pro Championships at Panama 70.3 and turned in some good first races of 2016. Leading the way was Richie Cunningham who finished in sixth (3:45:46) overall followed by fellow Aussie Paul “Barney” Matthews who came in 12th place (3:54:32).
In the women’s field, Lauren Goss turned in a seventh place finish (4:15:44) while Dede Griesbauer grabbed 10th place (4:22:56). Being a big points race, this seems to be a great start for our pros as their journey to world championship races begin. Congrats, gang!
Metzler, Seymour Camp Out in Clermont
We all know that Colorado summers are absolutely ideal to be outside and train. However, winter training here isn’t always the best, which is why many of our pros like to take their training to the nicer climates for a little “camp time.” We caught up with pros Justin Metzler and Jeanni Seymour who are camped out in Clermont, Florida for some pre-race training. After spending the holidays in Seymour’s stomping ground, Cape Town, South Africa, the duo decided that the Sunshine State would be their best bet for a winter training camp.
Here’s what they say on why winter training camp is vital for their seasons.
Jeanni: “We both decided to come to Clermont, Florida for two months. This will be my first time here and I am really enjoying it. We are staying with Sara Mclarty and the weather is much warmer than Boulder right now as we are able to train outside this time of year. There is a great 50-meter pool at the National Training Centre and all the running and riding we can do straight from the house, which makes training easy and convenient. Life is very laid back and simple here. Everything is close and it creates the perfect environment for what we need right now. I am slowly getting back into training and looking forward to building back up in preparation for my season and I am enjoying being able to just train and spend time with Justin.”
Justin: “I grew up in Chicago and went to college in Iowa, so when I graduated last year, I decided no more winter for me! I came down to Clermont for the first time last year and fell in love with it. Boulder in the summer is by far my favorite training location, but training in Clermont is perfect during our winter months. I was originally brought down to Clermont because my coach, Jesse Kropelnicki from QT2, runs a pro-only camp down here for one month in February. The most important part of being here, for me, is that my coach is able to see me for three weeks as I dive into a really serious three-week training block to prepare for my first race of the year, Ironman 70.3 Texas.”