News & Stories

2015 UCare Tri-Loppet Recap


Photos: f/go

tri-loppet3What a beautiful day it was for participants in the 2015 UCare Tri-Loppet. The water was calm, the trails were dry, the skies were blue and the temperatures were in the low to upper 70’s during the duration of the race. The Loppet Foundation couldn’t have asked for a better day for the 10th annual event!

The seven kilometer paddle start at Lake Calhoun North Beach had just a few last minute course changes for racers due to milfoil boats being in the course path. Kayaks, canoes and even a few stand up paddle boards began with a quick mass start at 9 a.m.

New to this year’s event was the separation of stock boats and race boats into General and Race categories for the individual racers. Plus, a prize purse was added to the General Boat category awarding the top three male and female individual finishers with a cash prize.

Racers said that the lakes and channels were at a good water level with the rainy spring we’ve had and course spectators were out with great enthusiasm resulting in some of the fastest paddling times in recent memory, even with the boat category changes.

tri-loppet5Second place individual male in the General group, Zachary Handler said that “the separation of the Race and General Boat categories really leveled out the race this year. Stock boats can really only travel so fast and once you max out at that speed, everyone is basically traveling together.”

Racers were happy with the last two-thirds of the race with dry conditions and little to no changes from previous years to the five kilometer trail run or thirteen kilometer mountain bikes course.

First time Tri-Loppet participant and trail running-newbie, Shannon Miller, 30, of St. Louis Park said, “I enjoyed the hilly single-track of the trail run even though it was very challenging for me because I am not much of a runner, especially on uneven terrain.” When asked what his favorite part of participating was, he stated, “Being new to the city, it was really cool to see it from all different angles all over the course.”

Race Results: General Individual, Race Boat, and Relay results

General Individual

tri-loppet4Matt Liebsch, 31, of Orono won the 2015 UCare Tri-Loppet with a time of 1:32:48. Zachary Handler, 37, of Minneapolis came in second place in the general boat category with a time of 1:34:20, while Ryan Peterson, 33, of Oak Grove came in third place at 1:35:29.

For a full listing of the General Individual Male Results, click here.

For ladies, Josie Nelson, 36, of Medicine Lake came in first place with a time of 1:42:53. Loppet FAST KIDS Coordinator, Kim Rudd, 44, of Plymouth came in second place with a time of 1:43:37. And hometown Olympic Nordic skiing hero, Caitlin Gregg, 34, of Minneapolis rounded out the top three with a time of 1:44:15.

For a full listing of the General Individual Female Results, click here.

Race Boat

The individual race boat category had a much smaller showing for men and women.

For men, Daniel Luoma, 30, of Minneapolis came in first place with a time of 1:45:09. In second, Blair Larson, 44, of Rochester finished with a time of 1:54:46. And Nate Hildenbrand, 44, of Elk River rounded out the top three with a time of 2:34:09.

For a full listing of the Race Individual Male Results, click here.

Brianna McMicheal, 29, of Minneapolis came in first place for women in the Race Boat category with a time of 2:27:30. Kylene Holasek, 36, of Minnetonka came in second place with a time of 2:31:13. And 36 year-old, Emily Johnson of St. Paul came in third at 2:35:18.

For a full listing of the Race Individual Female Results, click here.

Relay Results

The UCare Tri-Loppet continues to be a great event for relay teams. Mixed gender, male, female, corporate, and the Minnesota Parent family categories all had strong showings of participants. For a complete list of all of those results, click here.

Middle schoolers from Junior Loppet Teams complete the off-road triatholon

tri-loppet-anwatinThe Loppet Foundation’s three North Minneapolis middle school teams at Anwatin, Northeast and Nellie Stone Johnson impressed the organization’s staff by completing this year’s Tri-Loppet. The longest race of the year for these athletes completed their first, second and third years of the Tri-Loppet. Almost all of the Junior Loppet Team Tri-Loppet veterans improved on their times and helped cheer on all of their team members at the finish.

Volunteers and Sponsors a huge help to the Tri-Loppet

The finish of the off-road triathlon was a festive area for the 500 competitors, hundreds of spectators, Loppet staff and over 125 Loppet volunteers. With The Blue Cities playing music, Surly serving up beer, the Tollefson Food Truck, and lots of finish line nourishments from sponsors, smiles were on everyone’s faces. And we can’t ever say it enough, so we must say it again, thank you volunteers for everything you do!

UCare has been the title sponsor of the Tri-Loppet for many years now. As a UCare member and a UCare Silver Sneakers participant, Faye Goldammer, 65, of Rochester received a postcard in the mail and decided to sign up for the UCare Tri-Loppet because she’s “always wanted to try something like this before she couldn’t anymore.” When asked if she’d do it again, “absolutely!”

2015 f/go Photo Coverage