Boulder’s 5430 Triathlon
ISSUE #18, October/November 2002 – In its second incarnation, the 5430 Triathlon seems to have found its winning formula, with the addition of a half-iron race and a new loop bike course designed with input from Dave Scott. A total of 450 athletes competed, including 130 in the full iron-distance race, 200 in the half, and 34 relay teams.
The full iron-distance competitors were the first in the water at 7:00am. After completing two laps in Boulder Reservoir, Tony DeBoom exited in 51:10, followed eight minutes later by Robert Krause of Wilson, Wyoming. The first woman out of the water was Shannon Kerth of Highlands Ranch in a time of 1:03:40.
DeBoom went on to ride a blistering bike split before calling it a good training day in preparation for Hawaii. “It’s a great way to train,” he said, “having people handing you water bottles every ten miles.” A lack of sodium and his hard effort on the bike nevertheless left DeBoom with severe cramps and a trip to the medical tent.
Meanwhile, the half-iron competitors went off at 9:00am and were well into the run while the iron-distance racers were out on their second loop of the bike course.
First out of the swim in the half-iron race was Wolfgang Dittrich, a familiar name in triathlon. The retired German triathlete now living in Boulder clocked a time of 24:18. Sean Wendt of Golden and Kirk Framke of Denver followed over the next two minutes. Sixth into T1, and the first woman, was Boulder’s Elizabeth Anderson in 27:25, with Erika Leetmae of Denver on her shoulder.
Out on the bike, Dittrich found a comfortable rhythm and carried his lead into T2 and then out on the run course. Boulder’s Jared Berg moved his way up on the bike course and entered T2 in second position behind Dittrich. Third into T2 was former cyclist Michael Larson. Larson, inspired by brother Steve’s success in their new sport of triathlon, successfully played catch up after a slow swim to clock the fasted bike split of the day by over six minutes with his 2:11:02. Over the next six minutes, Kirk Framke, Garrett Ianacone, Paul Armstrong, Kevin Dessart, Kevin Gingras, Nathan Kirkland, and Kenny Leader filled in the top ten spots as they filed out onto the run course’s dirt roads.
In the women’s race, Anderson rode away from Leetmae and settled into a lead she would keep for the rest of the race. Behind Anderson, Tracey Schefler, a Canadian working as an oncologist in Denver, took over second position heading out on the run, followed by Samantha Kenney of Duluth, Georgia.
The men’s race saw more jockeying for positions out on the run course. Dittrich, having led since the beginning of the swim, still owned that position at mile-12 of the run. However, a flying Kirk Framke was sneaking up from behind. Catching Dittrich in the last mile, Framke ran to the finish to clock a 1:20:15 run split and take the win in 4:11:26.
Framke crossed the line glad to have a good training day under his belt in preparation for Hawaii in a few months. “The weather was perfect,” he said, noting the more bearable conditions than at last year’s race. Still, he remarked of his win, “I did not expect this.”
Dittrich, now 40 years old, was visibly happy with his performance after away from the racing scene for many years. “I didn’t know Kirk was there,” said Dittrich. “But it wouldn’t have mattered, I didn’t have anything left at the end.”
Rounding out the top three was Jared Berg in 4:17:18. Originally from Green Bay, Wisconsin, Berg will be competing in the upcoming Ironman Wisconsin. Then, he and his wife will be leaving their residence in Boulder to move to Minneapolis where she will attend chiropractic school.
In the women’s race, the order arranged out on the bike course prevailed as Anderson ran to victory in 4:42:40, followed by Shefler in 4:48:42. Kenney came in third with a time of 4:55:07.
“It’s great to race out here since we train on this course a lot,” said Anderson, who recently graduated from CU’s teaching program and plans on working part-time while trying to make a go at her professional triathlon career.
And as the half-iron racers filtered across the finish line, a long day remained for the iron-distance competitors.
Fraser Roberts of Boulder led the charge into T2 with his 5:15:29 bike split, followed by Guillermo Boza of Costa Mesa, California. Next into transition came Brian Johnson, Paul Vanderspeck, Kevin Edwards, and Dennis Gournic.
The women’s race was shaping up in a similar fashion to the half-iron women’s race. Kerth, having led out of the swim, maintained her position throughout the bike and took her solid lead into the marathon run. Likewise, Lynn O’Donnell kept her second place position into and out of T2.
Out on the three loop run course on the roads surrounding the reservoir, the men’s race began to shuffle the deck. Craig Greenslit of Berthoud, eighth off the bike, steadily made his way into the lead. “I started picking people off,” said Greenslit. And soon he found there were no more to pick off. Instead he came upon course marshal and last year’s winner Dennis Meeker who had the duty of riding his mountain bike with the lead runner.
In only his fourth triathlon and first at the distance, Greenslit’s running background paid off. Although he was hurting on the last lap of the run, he found the finish line for the win in a time of 10:04:46, also posting the fasted run split of the day in 3:21:46. Greenslit, an engineer, moved to Colorado six months ago, leaving Corpus Christi, Texas. “I went to school in Wyoming, though,” he said, “so I’m accustomed to the altitude.”
Second across the line was Matt Adams of Longmont, whose 3:37:07 marathon propelled him through the field of racers ahead of him in T2. Adams posted an overall time of 10:34:40.
Brian Johnson of Arvada rounded out third in 10:42:36.
In the women’s race, Kerth took her lead into the finish chute, clocking a winning time of 11:16:05. Having biked at a faster than usual pace, Kerth wasn’t sure if she could hold her lead to the finish line. “The run is usually my strength,” said Kerth, “but it was the hardest part today!”
Holding second place and crossing the line in 11:24:47 was O’Donnell, greeted by her husband and two children. O’Donnell had set a personal goal of breaking twelve hours and ignored her position in the race to focus in on that performance. It paid off.
In third for the women came Carol Murphy of Louisville in 12:16:41.
1, Craig Greenslit, Berthoud, 10:04:46
2, Matt Adams, Longmont, 10:34:40;
3, Brian Johnson, Arvada, 10:42:36;
4, Dennis Gournic, Littleton, 10:50:59;
5, Matt Chamberlain, Tucson, Ariz.; 10:55:49;
6, Kevin Edwards, Boulder, 10:58:48;
7, Matthew Eagan, Boulder, 11:23:47;
8, Fraser Roberts, Boulder, 11:32:57;
9, John Raser, Escondido, Calif., 11:33:37;
10, Mark Campbell, Ophir, 11:36:31.
1, Shannon Kerth, Highlands Ranch, 11:16:06;
2, Lynn O’Donnell, Boulder, 11:24:47;
3, Carrol Murphy, Louisville, 12:16.41;
4, Wendy Rein, Boulder, 12:28:18;
5, Donna J. Smith, Tampa, Fla., 12:32.50.
1, Kirk Framke, Denver, 4:11:26;
2, Wolfgang Dittrich, Boulder, 4:13:07;
3, Jared Berg, Boulder, 4:17:18;
4, Nathan Kirkland, Boulder, 4:21:58;
5, Michael Larsen, Boulder, 4:22:08;
6, Kevin Dessart, Colorado Springs, 4:23:07;
7, Kevin Gingras, Columbus, Ohio;
8, Andrew Biglow, Boulder, 4:29:20;
9, Paul Armstrong, Fort Collins, 4:30:58;
10, Jeffrey Keil, Denver, 4:33:32.
1, Elizabeth Anderson, Boulder, 4:42:40;
2, Tracey Schefter, Aurora, 4:48:42;
3, Samantha Kenney, Duluth, Ga., 4:55:07;
4, Ann Marie Andrews, Boulder, 5:00:11;
5, Tamsen Shcurman, El Prado, N.M., 5:03:02;
6, Kerrie Wlad, Longmont, 5:08:07;
7, Rachel Van Sloun, Avon, 5:10:47;
8, Erika Leetmae, 5:14:43;
9, Quinn Fitzpatrick, Denver, 5:32:05;
10, Janelle Lyn Stith, Boulder, 5:39:40.