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Friday, August 28 - Saturday, August 29, 2009 -- Morgantown, WV
Sprint, Splash 'n Spin Triathlon (iPO Event Id#: 12169)

2009: [Details] [Coverage] [Photos]
Results: [Overall Results] [Results by Class] [More Results] [More Results] [Kids Photos]

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Spinning, Swimming, and Grinning

Sprint Splash Spin Tri photo by Petsko
Bob Vernon (See more race photos)
Article and photos by J.R. Petsko

This past weekend I was off to cover the West Virginia University Hospitals Sprint, Splash and Spin at BoParc's Marilla Park and Pool in Morgantown, West Virginia. This was my third year in a row covering the event and I sure have come to look forward to it every year. The event really draws participates from all walks of life and not just you usual tri-athletes. Big ones, short ones, skin ones all can be found taking part in this true "community event".

The weather the morning of the tri was just about perfect with partly cloudy skis and comfortable temperatures. I was a little worried the day before because rains pounded down on the area. However the race crew hand everything perfect come start time.

The first wave of racers dove in the pool at 7am sharp. Not need for coffee when you hit the water that early in the morning I would guess. The first heat all was loaded with the fastest competitors who were going to battle for the overall win.

Racers such as Derek Clark, Sean Gallagher, Jason Balko, Dave Schnell and Brian Sherlock put everything they had into the swim.

Jason Balko was the first out of the water which enabled him to be the first to pick up his bike. Thomas Baily and Sean Gallagher were just seconds behind. Last years runner up, Derek Clark, found himself almost a minute down after the swim. Clark didn't appear to panic due to his strong cycling and running skills.

Sprint Splash Spin Tri photo by Petsko
Alice Vernon (See more race photos)
The bike-leg moved Clark from 13th place to 1st. With a ride time of 27:16, he was the fastest on the 11-mile course all day.

Rob Thomas, who was in 75th after the swim, also used a fast bike-leg time to move him in to a place for overall contention. Gallagher and Schnell both rode strong as well and looked to have a real battle on their hands.

During the run, Clark pulled out the fastest time of the day with a 17:25 on the 3.1 mile course. He took the overall win finishing in 50:47.

Sean Gallagher was able to stay consistent in all three legs to capture second overall with a time of 52:55.

Dave Schnell finished in third crossing the line in 55:18. Thomas Bailey's great run time of 19:01 helped move him up to take fourth overall (55:36). Baily was able to hold off Jason Balko who finished fifth with a total time of 55:44.

The women's overall champ was Jen Sober, 3rd overall woman in the 2008 Morgantown Area Grand Prix's Endurance Series, used her running skills to take the win. She ran the 7th best time of the day and finished the triathlon with a total time of 59:35.

Second went to Rebecca Gallagher whose swim of 4:55 was smoking fast. Gallagher finished in a total time of 1:03:05. In third was Tina Genay who crossed the finish in 1:04:20. Lori Sherlock was close behind in fourth overall with a time of 1:04:57. Fifth went to Annaleise Robinson in a total time of 1:07:24.

What a great time everyone had. The smiles on everyone's face truly showed how much fun it was. Maybe next year I will even try to do it!