• Anchorage brothers sweep top spots at Sea-to-Ski; Hanna Young named 2014 Ironwoman
By Sean Pearson
If there was ever a perfect day to host a triathlon in Homer, Sunday just might have been it.
Nearly 100 athletes took off on foot from Mariner Park early Sunday afternoon, welcomed by sunny skies and unseasonably warm temperatures in yet another annual Kachemak Nordic Ski Club Sea-to-Ski Triathlon.
And, while the mid 40s may not sound particularly warm by some folks’ standards, triathletes were doffing several layers of clothing by the time they finished the final 5-kilometer ski leg of the competition.
“Conditions were more or less perfect, because it was right in the temperature range where it was difficult to choose between short and long sleeves,” said 2014 Ironman winner Lex Treinen of Anchorage. “I had to fight the urge to stop and take in the view as I was going up the hill.”
The 2014 Ironwoman honors went to Hanna Young, who finished with a total elapsed time of 1:06.16. Her 16:40 ski performance gave her the 35-second advantage over second-place finisher, Annie Ridgely.
Ridgely turned in both the fastest running and biking times among women. She finished the 5k run in 24:06, and the biking leg in 24:05.
Lex Treinen said he had just finished competing in cross-country skiing at the U.S. Nationals in Anchorage, when he and his brother Nick came to Homer and grabbed the top two spots in this year’s triathlon.
Lex finished with a total elapsed time of 55.23 minutes, while Nick, a student at Alaska Pacific University, came in almost a full three minutes later with a time of 58.28.
Lex said the hardest part of the competition for him was the 7.5k bike climb up West Hill.
“I was riding with studded tires because I didn’t know what the conditions would be like,” Lex explained. “The third-place finisher (Chaz DiMarzid) told me that as soon as he heard us pull out of the parking lot and heard our studs clicking on the pavement, he knew he would have a shot at catching us.”
But he didn’t catch them.
Lex was the fastest finisher in the 5k run, and third-fastest in the biking segment. Team competitor Fred Dickerson blew past everyone with his 19:32 finish in the biking. DiMarzid was second-fastest with a time of 19:46.
And, then came the skiing.
“The skiing was harder than I expected — especially after blowing out my legs on the cycling,” Lex said. “I felt like my shins were made of wood because they were so stiff.”
Second-place team finisher Mary Kate Green also struggled a bit with the ski segment.
“Not being a skier, the course was a bit intimidating,” she said. “It was icy with a lot of slush and bits of earth peeking through.”
Still, Green said she enjoyed the challenge.
“A triathlon is all about pushing through nature’s challenges,” she explained. “In every competition, I remind myself that everyone is running the same race, and it’s toughest ones that makes things happen.”
Green said she loves the Sea to Ski Triathlon because Homer is flush with a number of real athletes.
“There are some hardcore athletes out there, so it’s so fun to see where you stack up,” she said.
Green was having so much fun, in fact, she decided to compete on two different teams, and then finished with a solo ski to the finish line.
Green said she is now in training for the Gold Nugget Triathlon in Anchorage on May 18. Them she hits an Olympic Triathlon in Bozeman, Mont. and finishes up the year with the Lost Lake Run.
For Lex and Nick Treinen, this year’s Sea to Ski was a bit of a spontaneous decision.
“We both had the weekend off and wanted to have a bit of adventure,” Lex explained. “I was feeling pretty confident about my skiing, but Nick has definitely beat me in both skiing and running events before.”
Lex said he has had a leg up on his brother lately because he is training full time.
“Of course, it always feels good to beat a sibling,” he said. “I’m glad he got second, though.”
Following the triathlon, the Treinen brothers were invited to enjoy a soak in the hot tub with the Spurkland family.
“Jan told us that he and his brother, Lars, had also finished first and second in the race some six or so years ago,” Lex said.
• Megan Spurkland turned in the fastest time for all women on the skiing leg, finishing in 16:12. She was followed by Young, who finished 28 seconds later.
• Tadgh Scholz’s 13:47 performance on the ski leg bested the next-closest ski finisher, former Olympian Pete Alexson, by 38 seconds.
• Jan Spurkland’s bike time of 20:06 proved to be the third-fastest of the day.
• Jane Wiebe’s consistent and steady pace gave her third place in the Ironwoman throwdown. She finished in an overall elapsed time on 1:10.27.
• Joell Slade-House, Kathy Sarns and Polly Prindle-Hess took the top spot in the women’s team competition. They finished in 1:16.56. Green, Angie Otteson and Emilie Springer were second.
• For the men, Jordan Beach, Jacob Davis and Pete Alexson combined for the fastest team time of 59:33.
• Mixed team winners were Tara Schmidt, Fred Dickerson and Matt Byrd. Byrd had the third-fastest overall ski time with 16:03.
Complete results from the 2014 Sea to Ski Triathlon are available on the Homer Tribune Website.
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