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Organizations have fun and competition

By JESSICA FISH
© St. Petersburg Times
published May 3, 2002

Members of the St. Pete Mad Dogs Triathlon Club and the St. Anthony's Triathlon staff, as well as volunteers such as Steve Meckfessel and Kathy Morgan, hosted a whirlwind of parties, barbecues, the Pass-a-Grille open water swims, European homestays and airport bike shuttles at Straub Park.

Rookies were out in full force Saturday, and the following first-time Meek & Mighty winners celebrated at North Shore Pool: Jamie Drake, 17, Palm Harbor, 33 minutes, 55 seconds; John Milo, 18, St. Petersburg, 29:06; Jennifer Ross, 22, St. Petersburg, 35:16; Delinda Brooks, 38, Land O'Lakes, 33:42; Carolyn McNulty, 41, Seminole, 35:38; Mark Sokolov, 40, Largo, 30:26; Sybil Lotz, 48, Oldsmar, 33:29; Jerry Correa, 51, St. Petersburg, 37:14; Kristin Frey, 56, Tierra Verde, 42:07; Dan Thomas, 55, Clearwater, 38:16; Cathy DeHaan, 60, Seminole, 40:52; Dennis McDonnell, 60, Odessa, 37:03; Roland DeRussy, 72, St. Petersburg, 44:30; Betty Miller, 71, Lutz, 46:06; and Aron Jones, 22, Largo, 52:22.

On Sunday, more than 2,000 competitors lined up on race morning under a full moon. First in line for the 5:30 body marking was Seminole's Darry Jackson, who drove to Straub Park with his raffle giveaway kayaks on the roof rack.

Surviving the heat, and the only triathlete to go a sub 2 hours, was Daniel Domingo, 28, of Jacksonville, 1 hour, 58 minutes, 15 seconds. The overall women's winner was Deirdre Tennant, 30, Kailua-Kona, Hawaii, 2:10:00.

Tampa's Linda Musante was the top master women's winner, 2:22:40. She was coming off a victory in the Escape From Fort DeSoto Triathlon the previous week.

CANNON CELEBRATES: Former Buc John Cannon, 41, of Tampa has championed the U.S. clydesdales by creating a world competition for this division.

Cannon won top honors in 2:22:40, and gave race announcer Jerry MacNeill a break by handing out Sunday's clydesdale awards. The women's winner was Laura Gruen, 25, Tampa, 2:48:57.

"We were happy to lead the way in the first swim wave," Cannon said. "The participation for clydesdales is growing."

The local winners were Dave Damrath, 32, St. Petersburg, 2:09:17; Kathleen Kaye, 44, St. Petersburg, 2:25:55; Joe Bonness, 46, Naples, 2:09:19; Roz Randall, 52, Odessa, 2:45:29; Jan Thompson, 56, Tampa, 2:53:19; Katie Knight-Perry, 66, St. Petersburg, 3:30:26; Jackie Yost, 74, Treasure Island, 4:00:29; and the oldest competitor, Charlie Futtrell, 81, The Villages, 4:26:48.

STRAUB NOTES: Coach Roger Burke, 65, of Seminole, along with Knight-Perry, were presented the Golden Torch Awards for their outstanding performances in the 2002 Good Life Games in Clearwater.

The ceremony was held during a post-race photo shoot by Triathlete Magazine editor Tim Carlson. The 200 howling Mad Dogs waved hats, banners and rang bells from the Straub Park bleachers as the last triathlete passed behind Carlson's equipment.

National anthem singer Shirley Bassett, 63, of St. Petersburg finished in 4:59:53.

RELAY ACTION: The St. Anthony's Triathlon relay team winners were Team Revoluntion Bikes, with cyclist Bill Addler, in 2:14:04; The Ice Crystals, cyclist Sandy Murray, 2:54:04; It Hertz, with runner (2002 Gasparilla winner) Tony Teats, 2:02:17; Run DMG, with state cycling champion Mark McGarry, 2:07:37; St. Pete Beach's We're Jammin, 2:42:57; A Fox & Two Dogs, with SPM swimmer John Cox, 2:54:01; Tampa Tribune, and St. Petersburg cycling champ Russ Holocek, 2:08:10.

Corporate relay squads including these winners: BayCare Health Systems, Clearwater, 3:12:11; Suncoast Community Blood Bank, Tampa, 2:50:31; William R. Hough & Co., St. Petersburg, with cyclist Bill Hough, 3:17:77; Raymond James I, with mountain bike expert champion Susie Marsten, Largo, 2:20:23; and defending champions Raymond James II with cyclist Roman Fish, Largo, and Forerunners marathoner Lenore Rupert, Largo, 3:05:52.

GOOD DEEDS: Cyclists from the Raymond James Financial team were led by Clearwater's Joel Ott in the previous week's MS 150.

They raised $5,000 for multiple sclerosis research programs.

The event attracted 400 riders who pedalled 150 miles from Tampa to Weeki Wachee and back, pledging a total of $100,000. Check out their web site at www.nationalmssociety.org.

Hundreds of Team In Training triathletes, coaches and volunteers traveled from as far as San Francisco to participate in the St. Anthony's Triathlon weekend.

Team In Training's fund-rasing efforts benefit research for The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society. For information, call coach Lewis Bennett, (727) 535-5008.

MAD BEACH TRIATHLON: The 17th annual Mad Beach Mad Dog Triathlon is scheduled for May 18-19 at Archibald Beach Park in Madeira Beach.

The Mad Tri Kids & Adults mini triathlon is 8 a.m. May 18. Volunteers are encouraged to call Carl and Lee Allison, (727) 547-2282; or Wendy Johnson and York Somerville, (727) 527-8869. May 19 will feature adult racing (swim .5 mile, bike 15 miles, run 3.1) at 7 a.m. Awards will be presented to the top 10 in each division.

Mad Beach weekend activities will include a post race party and an expo. For information, call Bill Hansbury, (727) 360-1968.

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