USAT Announces 2002 Athletes of the Year

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COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (Jan. 17, 2003) – USA Triathlon has announced its athletes of the year for 2002. In elite triathlon, Barb Lindquist (Victor, Idaho) won the women’s award and Tim DeBoom (Lyons, Colo.) took the men’s prize.

Lindquist had a sensational year with 15 podium finishes, including an ITU World Cup victory and a second-place finish at the ITU Triathlon World Championships in Cancun, Mexico. She also won the accenture race series in Australia – becoming the first American to win an Australian series – and the Life Time Fitness Triathlon, in which she beat female and male triathletes for the $50,000 prize. She finished the year ranked No. 2 in the world behind U.S. teammate Siri Lindley, who has retired.

DeBoom won his second straight Ironman World Championship in October of 2002, finishing in a time of 8 hours, 29 minutes, 59 seconds.  He also won the Blackwater Eagleman Half-Ironman race in Cambridge, Md., setting a new course record with his time of 3:44:07. DeBoom capped of his year in November by finishing second at the Laguna Phuket triathlon in Thailand.

The USA Triathlon elite duathletes of the year are Andrea Ratkovic (Norman, Okla.) and Greg Watson (Newark, Del.).

Ratkovic, who won the elite duathlete of the year award in 2001 as well, had to sit out part of the 2002 season with Rocky Mountain spotted fever, but still finished on the podium in eight races, including victories at the McDowell Desert Classic and the Dannon Duathlon in Alpharetta, Ga. She won the women’s U.S. national duathlon title in Carlsbad, Calif., while finishing the race second overall. She also finished second at Powerman Alabama and 15th at the ITU Dannon Duathlon World Championships in Alpharetta.

Watson, who has won the elite duathlete of the year award several times, continued his reign over U.S. men’s duathlon, winning six duathlons in a row in 2002. His winning streak included victories at the duathlon national championships and Powerman Tennessee. Watson was also the top U.S. men’s finisher, and 15th overall, at the ITU Dannon Duathlon World Championships in Alpharetta.

The rookie elite triathlete of the year awards went to Kelly Handel (Zionsville, Ind.) and Tim Kitching (Baltimore, Md.). Handel, a resident athlete at the U.S. Olympic Training Center, won the Pan American Triathlon Championships and qualified for the 2002 world team by finishing third at the elite worlds qualifier in Boston. Kitching, an Australian racing for the United States for the first time, finished second at the U.S. elite national championships in New York.

The rookie elite duathlete of the year awards were given to Melissa Hopkins (Birmingham, Ala.) and Justin Henkel (Sheboygan, Wis.). Hopkins finished fourth at Powerman Tennessee, eighth at the U.S. duathlon national championships and fifth at the Dannon Duathlon in Alpharetta, Ga. She also represented the United States at the long and short course duathlon world championships. Henkel also represented the United States at the long and short course world championships and finished fourth at the Saturn Duathlon and fifth at the Dannon Duathlon races in Boston and Alpharetta.

The overall age group triathletes of the year for 2002 are Pete Kain (Cupertino, Calif.) and Julie Swail (Irvine, Calif.). Swail, a member of the 2000 Olympic women’s water polo team in her first full year of triathlon competition, won the U.S. age group national championship and the age group (30-34) and overall titles at the ITU triathlon and aquathlon world championships. Kain, a veteran triathlete, won the overall title at the age group national championships and placed third in his age group (35-39) at the triathlon world championships.

The overall age group duathletes of the year are Joshua Beck (Carlisle, Pa.) and Amanda Gillam (Boulder, Colo.). Beck won his age group (20-24) at both the U.S. national duathlon championships and at the ITU duathlon world championships. Gillam won the women’s 30-34 age group at the duathlon world championships and had the overall fastest time among the age group women.

2002 USA Triathlon Athletes of the Year (including honorable mentions)

Women: Barb Lindquist  (Victor, Idaho)
HM: Siri Lindley, Sheila Taormina
Men: Tim DeBoom  (Lyons, Colo.)
HM: Hunter Kemper, Joe Umphenour

Triathlon Rookies
Women: Kelly Handel (Zionsville, Ill.)
HM: Jenny Marine, Gia White
Men: Tim Kitching (Baltimore, Md.)
HM: Matt Kowalski

Women: Andrea Ratkovic (Norman, Okla.)
HM: Desiree Ficker, Marjan Huizing
Men: Greg Watson (Newark, Del.)
HM: Travis Kuhl, Eric Schwartz

Duathlon Rookies
Women: Melissa Hopkins (Birmingham, Ala.)
HM: Heather Haviland, Rachel Sears
Men: Justin Henkel (Sheboygan, Wis.)
HM: Sam Wilbur

Male Overall: Pete Kain (Cupertino, Calif.)
HM: Michael Boehmer, Jim Bruskewitz, Otho Keller, Tony Schiller, David Thompson

Female Overall: Julie Swail (Irvine, Calif.)
HM: Sherry Coons, Amanda Gillam, Melanie Holloway, Ann Lantz, Amy Rice, Margaret Shapiro, Amanda Stevens

Masters Male: Tony Schiller (Chanhassen, Minn.)
HM: John Brockenbrough, Jim Bruskewitz, Dennis Moriarty, Brad Price, Steve Pyle, Chuck Sperazza

Masters Female: Donna Smyers (Montpelier, Vt.)
HM: Mary Dunn, Jan Guenther, Amy Rice, Lydia Schlosser, Laura Sophiea

Grandmasters Male: Wayne McSheehy (Fort Walton Beach, Fla.)
HM: Jon Adamson, Bruce Buchanan, Charley French, Bob Scott

Grandmasters Female: Paula Larsen (Horicon, Wis.)
HM: Harriett Anderson, Madonna Buder, Susan Bradley-Cox, Jan Miller

Junior Male: Manuel Huerta (Miami, Fla.)
HM: Justin Caskey, Randall Lewis, Mike Orton, Chris Stehula

Junior Female: Jasmine Oeinck (Littleton, Colo.)
HM: Sarah Bickerstaff, Ashley Carusone, Sara McLarty, Grace Ann Nathanson

Male Overall: Joshua Beck (Carlisle, Pa.)
HM: Brad Anderson, Thomas Jeffrey, Joshua Ritchie

Female Overall: Amanda Gillam (Boulder, Colo.)
HM: Gabriele Hauch, Chris Farias, Melissa Ruthven, Cecily Tynan

Masters Male: David Walters (Lisle, Ill.)
HM: Derek Hager, Michael Homan, Dana Lyons, Mac Martin

Masters Female: Sue Davis (Costa Mesa, Calif.)
HM: Anne Ellacott, Sandy Meister-Meredith, Kristen Miller

Grandmasters Male: Tony Mauro (Pittsburgh, Pa.)
HM: Don Ardell, Ron Lemerich, Warren Taylor

Grandmasters Female: Paula Larsen (Horicon, Wis.)
HM: Emily Bruno, Judy Carroll, Sue Stark

Junior Male: Justin Caskey (Boulder, Colo.)
HM: Matt Coy, Manuel Huerta, Taylor Tolleson, Dustin Whitson

Junior Female: Grace Ann Nathanson (Baton Rouge, La.)
HM: Bethany Fortuna, Jen Perez, Marisa Ryan, Katie Siegal

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