Sunday, May 24, 2009


Hey, do you know this guy? His name is Bob Bailey, he's 65, he's from Woodbury, and he's FAST! He and Ann Rhea and Todd Firebaugh and Jan Guenther and Marnie Walth, were responsible for five of the eight "non-open-class" ** course records that fell at the Apple Duathlon  on May 23. Keep in mind that the Apple consists of  5K opening and closing runs bracketing a 33K bike race.

(Photo by Erik Hull)

Here's the blow-by-blow.

* Bob Bailey lowered Hank Larsen's 2007 65-69 mark by 1:29. New 65-69M Record: 1:50:13

* Ann Rhea (Plymouth) took her own 60-64 course best from 2008 down by 1:34. New 60-64W Record:  2:23:40

* Jan Guenther (Mound) took a capacious 3:56 bite out of Melinda Silbernick's 50-54 best, set in 2007. Jan still owns the women's 45-49 best (1:37:58, set in 2006). New 50-54W Record: 1:40:51

* Todd Firebaugh (Woodbury) nibbled 18 seconds from his own year-old 45-49 mark. New 45-49M Record: 1:29:15

* Marlina Walth (Bismarck, ND) prevented Jan Guenther from holding 3 divisional records by bettering her (Jan's) 40-44 best, set back in 2004, by 2:08. New 40-44W Record: 1:35:48

The other marks were set by Maryland's William "Mac" Martin in the 55-59M AG (1:37:33), Michigan's Karen McKeachie for the 55-59W (1:51:42) and 74-year-old cancer survivor Pat Fossum of Montgomery, AL (2:34:30). Pat is a two-time U.S. Grand Master of the Year and is formerly from Albert Lea, MN. Karen is a former U.S. Triathlete of the Year and Master of the Year and has won 9 medals in World Championship competition. Martin was U.S. Master of the Year in 1995, is a 14-time All American and holds 4 Worlds medals.

* * The Open Class divisions serve those athletes age 20 through 39. Most records in these groups belong to past champions or top 3-5 overall finishers. When races are covered, these are the boys and girls who traditionally get most of the attention.