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Triathlon: Anderson, Radniecki battle for top honors

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sports Brainerd, 56401
Brainerd MN 506 James St. / PO Box 974 56401

BAXTER - Early morning thunderstorms did nothing to hinder the 152 athletes who crossed the finish line in Sunday's Lakes Country Triathlon.

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Thomas Anderson III, 38, finished with a time of 1:03.18 to win in his first Lakes Country Triathlon.

The Minneapolis resident, who has family ties to the lakes area, competed in three other triathlons in 2014 with one coming the day before the Lakes event.

"I was into marathons and started cycling a bit and someone suggested that I should do a triathlon and I did and it was fun," said Anderson. "A lot of these things start as a hobby, but it's a lifestyle where you get a great stress reduction tool.

"What amazes me, and what I think is great about triathlons, is that you can do it at any age and it's fun to show up and win, but the reality is you're competing against yourself. Winning just means that you happened to be the fastest person that day and then you can go to another race and someone else will be faster. It's just fun to go out and give it your best shot."

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191 Photo Lakes County Triathlon Klick Photo Gallery and Slideshow - KLICK Here!

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Brainerd resident Matt Radniecki, 28, was finished in a close second with his 1:03.56.

"Thomas Anderson is a fast and awesome guy," Radniecki said. "The run isn't my strong point so I knew I'd need a big gap coming off the bike if wanted to keep in front of him. But halfway through the run he managed to reel me in, and put some good time on me pretty quickly."

Second was a career best for Radniecki, who started competing in 2010

"My first tri was the Lakes Country Tri in 2010," said Radniecki. "I finished last in my age group and in 282nd-place overall at that race. I've worked hard over the last few years and have gotten faster and more experienced."

Michelle Andres, 37, of East Gull Lake pulled in a third-place finish overall as the top female finisher with a time of 1:04.27.

"I would have kicked it down a little more if I would have known I was that close to overall," said Andres. "When you're in the last wave you're constantly passing people and there's always people in front of you. You have no idea where you're really at in the race."

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162 Photo Kiwanis Kids Triathlon Klick™ Photo Gallery and Slideshow - KLICK Here!

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A long time local and national competitor, Andres is set to start the last leg of her training to try and achieve a marathon qualifying time at the Chicago marathon Oct. 12.

"It's so hard in the middle of marathon training," said Andres. "I had two 100 mile weeks and so it's just like trying to sprint when I'm used to long and slow rather than this super fast. I really didn't have any expectations at all. I just went as hard and fast as I could."

Peder Smith, Chuck Carlson and Ryan Swartwood made up The Band-its and finished as the top relay team with a time of 1:04.42.

Team FAB, Fallon Ryan, Beth Etterman and Abby Selisker, were the top finishing female relay team with their time of 1:12.00 and Jared Anderson, Sean Kaneski and Madison Smith were Two Gophers and a Husky and placed first in the co-ed relay division with a 59.44 time

The top finishers in the youngest age category, 19 and under, were Josh Nordstrom, 15 of Crystal with a 1:13.53 and Lauren Steinke, 14, St. Cloud, who finished in 1:09.24.

The annual triathlon which consists of a quarter-mile swim, 14-mile bike and a 3.2-mile run is hosted by Kiwanis International and raises funds to support youth and community programming.

Leaderboard

Men:

1-Thomas Anderson III 1:03.18

2-Matt Radniecki 1:03.56

3-Michael McConkey 1:05.59

4-Nathan Wentz 1:06.13

5-Riant Northway 1:06.44

6-Kirk Larson 1:07.35

7-Eric Evans 1:07.46

8-David Knack 1:08.08

9-Andy Whiteman 1:08.09

10-Matthew Dickinson 1:08.52

Women:

1-Michelle Andres 1:04.27

2-Jacquelyn Bacigalupi 1:07.23

3-Sara Rondorf 1:07.26

4-Sara Carlson 1:07.53

5-Lauren Steinke 1:09.24

6-Dena Storm 1:10.12

7-Kjersten Buzek 1:10.51

8-Louise Bilek 1:13.55

9-Liz Larson 1:15.35

10-Ann Graeve 1:18.34

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