This year, Multisport Mastery was represented by 12 athletes at the 70.3 World Championship in Chattanooga. From pro to AG podium to first-time world championship finisher, our athletes put forth their best efforts on a challenging, championship-worthy course. I’m excited to share more about their journeys from qualification to race day performance.
Anna Johnson (Illinois) was a first-time world championship qualifier and finisher. Anna secured her slot to worlds with a brave 3rd in AG performance at Ohio 70.3. Last year, Anna’s husband (also a triathlete) found out he had leukemia. When faced with whether to proceed with her training or pause to focus on her husband’s battle, he urged her to keep going, telling her that she was now racing for the both of them. Like many of you, Anna juggles her training with a career as therapist and being mother to 5 children. Anna took on the hills of Chattanooga with courage and strength to arrive at the world championship finish line. Congratulations, Anna!
Jeff Bishop (Minnesota) accepted his slot to the world championship at Florida 70.3. He is a consistent performer who keeps inching his way higher and higher up into his age group. With a world championship qualifying performance at Olympic distance Nationals in Omaha a few weeks earlier, Jeff headed to 70.3 Worlds heat acclimated, prepared and confident he could put together his best day. He capped off his swim and bike with a 1:30 half marathon – a new PR on a tough course. Congratulations, Jeff!
Heather Grier (Illinios) qualified for 70.3 Worlds with 4th AG and a 30+ minute PR at Muncie 70.3. Heather is a long-time triathlete and mother of 6 who has combined her incredible drive with killer consistency over the past year. As a former physique competitor and personal trainer, I reminded her that when it came to the Chattanooga course, her strength was her strength! Heather finished worlds in the top 25% of her AG with a new run PR on a very hilly course. Congratulations, Heather!
Cathy Yndstead (Switzerland) enlisted the coaching of Liz Waterstraat (Multisport Mastery) and Jennifer Harrison (JHC Triathlon Coaching) to chase big dreams in her 2017 season. 2nd overall at Mallorca 70.3 qualified her for the world championship. She followed that up with several overall podium finishes at local races. Cathy is a gritty competitor with a long list of top performances, overall wins, podiums at endurance events of all kinds. On race day, it was no surprise that Cathy raced gritty, brave and led her AG until the last few miles of the run. She crossed the finish line 3rd in AG and top 10 AG woman overall. Congratulations, Cathy!
Kevin Ferguson (Illinois) qualified for worlds with 5th AG & 20 minute PR at Muncie 70.3. With Ironman Florida on the race schedule, 70.3 Worlds was a well-timed fitness booster. Kevin has significantly improved his swim leading into a strong bike and stronger run. In his words, he felt like he could have kept going which is exactly where we want him leading into the final preparation for Ironman. Congratulations, Kevin!
Robin Watson (Arizona) qualified for her first 70.3 world championship in 2016. Throughout 2017, we worked to lift her bike and run performances closer to her strong swim. Robin didn’t race much en route to worlds but put a lot of time and energy into her training, especially under the intense conditions of summer in Arizona. Robin finished close to the top 10% of her AG with all around strong performances in each discipline. Congratulations, Robin!
Liz Cullen (Canada) is one of MSM’s super mom/coach/athletes. With an infant who still wasn’t sleeping through the night, Liz impressively qualified for 70.3 Worlds with a 3rd in AG finish at Victoria 70.3. She spent her summer working the hills and swimming with the “big kids” to boost her performance in Chattanooga. Less than a year after having her 2nd child, she finished top 30 in her AG. Congratulations, Liz!
Karen Rayle (Vietnam) is no stranger to the podium with AG podium finishes at Vietnam 70.3 and Calgary 70.3 in 2016. Her worlds qualification came from her 2016 AWA ranking, earning her an automatic slot. Karen spends most of her year as a teacher in the oppressively hot conditions of Vietnam. This year was no exception! Unfortunately, in the preparation for racing, anything can happen – after the long travel, Karen encountered some food poisoning. This obstacle didn’t keep her from starting and then finishing what she started by crossing the worlds finish line. Congratulations, Karen!
Amanda Wendorff (Colorado) started with Multisport Mastery back in 2012. Little did we know where the journey would take us! From beginner to AG 70.3 world champion, Amanda stepped up to racing pro late in 2015. Less than 2 years later, she accepted a slot to the 70.3 pro world championship as a result of points gathered from several top 10 70.3 pro finishes around the world. Amanda raced with a strong focus on execution, self-belief and staying engaged while racing against the world’s best. Congratulations, Amanda!
Jen Scalise (Massachusetts) qualified for the 70.3 world championship with a 3rd AG finish at Mont Tremblant 70.3. Jen chooses her races carefully and puts tons of heart and positivity into her training. She arrived in Chattanooga ready to work! Unfortunately, a crash on the bike cost her a good amount of time but in true Jen-fashion, she got right back into it and raced to her best, finishing in the top 30 of her AG. Congratulations, Jen!
Shelly Lake (Virginia) is one of the best coaches in the triathlon business with some of the fastest amateur men in the country on her Fiv3 Racing roster. Coming off of a strong 2016 season where she qualified for the 70.3 World Championship in Australia in her first race back after having a baby, Shelly’s 2016 AWA ranking earned her an automatic slot to the 2017 World Championship. Starting Worlds, Shelly was as fit as she’s ever been – having one of her best executed races ever. Congratulations, Shelly!
Josie Graham (Texas) qualified for 70.3 Worlds with a 3rd AG finish at Syracuse 70.3 Less than 8 weeks before Worlds, Josie discovered she had a femoral neck stress reaction. With the support of a dedicated team of physical therapists, Josie decided to press forward with her goal to compete at Worlds. We approached her training just as if she was running – with no increase in her swim and bike, simply replacing all runs with quality water run sessions. Two weeks before the race, she began some running on an Alter-G treadmill. With only one (yes, one!!) 20-minute run on land before the race, Josie toed the line at the world championship with weeks of a can-do attitude, persistence and trust behind her. Not only did she finish in the top 30% of her AG but she also set a new half marathon PR. Congratulations, Josie!
From first-time finishers, AG podium to pro – THIS is what Multisport Mastery is all about. We take pride in being a part of the journey where everyday athletes work to find the best version of themselves. What a year!