Tuscaloosa, Ala. – The 2017 USA Triathlon Collegiate Club National Championships kicked off on Friday morning, with the University of Colorado’s Dan Feeney and Erica Hawley earning wins in the draft-legal races.
Feeney covered the 750m swim, 20.2-kilometer bike, 5-kilometer run course in 57 minutes, 7 seconds. Feeney came out of the water in 19th place and started the bike in a chase pack, but was able to work with his group over the first two of five bike laps to catch the leaders.
With about 17 athletes heading out of the second transition in a tight group, it came down to a running race. Feeney, who ran cross-country and track as an undergraduate at the University of Delaware, pulled away on the two-lap run course to post a 16:12 run split. Runner-up Joshua Fowler of Arizona finished a few seconds behind Feeney in an overall time of 57:11, and Collin Chartier of Marymount University rounded out the podium in 57:23.
“I didn’t have a great swim and I was in the chase pack heading onto the bike, but we worked really hard to bridge the gap,” Feeney said. “I was pretty worried the first two laps, but once we finally caught, I could get a breath and I was pretty confident I could run well. I come from a running background, so running has always been my forte.”
In the women’s race, Hawley and Teresa Groton of West Point exited the water first, both posting 11:37 swim splits. Hawley pulled ahead through transition and ultimately held onto the lead for the entire race. The Colorado freshman covered the five-lap bike course solo, building a gap of about two minutes on her closest competitor heading into the second transition. On the run, she widened her lead even more with a 20:15 5k split, crossing the line in 1 hour, 9 minutes, 3 seconds.
Groton, who rode in the top four throughout the bike, made a move on the run to place second in 1:11:14. Allison Light of UCLA was third in 1:11:27.
“It was my first year racing, so I wasn’t too sure what it would be like,” Hawley said. “I felt good on the swim and took the first half lap of the bike pretty steady. Then when they weren’t catching, I thought I may as well go for it. On the run I felt pretty good and I knew I was in the lead, so I just tried to keep my pace knowing that I’m racing tomorrow too.”
The double wins give Colorado an advantage heading into tomorrow’s Collegiate Club National Championships Olympic-distance race, as both draft-legal and Olympic-distance results will factor into the overall team scores.
For Saturday morning’s race, athletes will cover a 1,500m swim, non-drafting 40k bike and 9.8k run course, with men starting at 7:30 a.m. and women starting at 10:20 a.m.
The weekend of collegiate racing concludes with the Collegiate Mixed Team Relay on Saturday at 4:15 p.m. Teams are comprised of four athletes (two men and two women), with each athlete covering a 300m swim, 5.9k bike, 1.6k run course. The Mixed Team Relay event will also feature up to 10 alumni teams.
Men’s Collegiate Draft-Legal Triathlon
- Dan Feeney (Colorado), 57:07
- Joshua Fowler (Arizona), 57:11
- Collin Chartier (Marymount), 57:23
- Timothy Winslow (Colorado), 57:41
- Kevin Holder (Navy), 57:45
Women’s Collegiate Draft-Legal Triathlon
- Erica Hawley (Colorado), 1:09:03
- Teresa Groton (West Point), 1:11:14
- Allison Light (UCLA), 1:11:27
- Maeghan Easler (Iowa State), 1:11:32
- Anna Belk (Cal Berkeley), 1:11:52