The short report about covers it (see below), but as some of you know, I have a bit of free time these days. Here’s a longer version if you’re interested:
I think all Onionman participants and spectators were happy to escape the traditional winter weather of Memorial Day weekend for something a bit milder in Walla Walla, Washington. Upon arrival Saturday evening, the sky was cloudy, but warmer than home. We were warned the lake was a cool (for most?) 61 degrees. The clouds stuck around until morning to be joined by an unwelcomed wind. Parking was an issue this year–unless you got there two hours early, as we did. Is it not the triathlete way to avoid walking an extra half mile? I mean we even ran a few red lights to make it there…
The male heat started us off, with females 5 minutes later. The water was indeed chilly at first, but I think everyone warmed up fast. Even Karen, with one bum shoulder, had a great swim. It was reported a bit short, which seems to be either a really good or really bad thing depending who you are. At this point, I tagged off to Big Goose (our team name “Big Goose and Little Duck”) for the bike and played an intense round of Uno in the van with Addie and Ashlin Slanger. The sun was shining as we awaited the return of TGD bikers. I heard the wind was nasty and aero riding was a must, which Bill Ramsey powered through despite a sore back. Things were really heating up by the run. It was fun and motivating to see so many teammates on the out and back course. Sean Slanger caught me at the turnaround to finish fast and Brian Johnson was right on my heels pushing me across the finish. As far as I could tell, everyone had a good race and we enjoyed the traditional BBQ afterwards. Evan Eck walked away with the only age group award with a time almost under two hours. Team Big Goose and Little Duck did not prevail over the team whose biker was warming up on rollers (yikes) and others, but both our raffle numbers were drawn. There goes my luck for the whole summer…
A big thanks to Russ Gates who transported bikes allegedly worth more than his vehicle and directed us to the best beer, oh and food, in town.
(previously submitted “short version”)
We came, we raced, we drank a little wine…that’s the short report.
Feel free to stop reading here.
TGD had a great turnout and solid performances by many team members.
In loose order, Evan Eck, Russ Gates, Sean Slanger, Hannah and Ann
Seifert (as a team), Bryan Johnson, Sarah Slanger, Bill Ramsey, and
Karen Powell. Did I miss anyone? There were a couple of other Helena
folks there, too, and as usual, a great cheering HLN crowd to carry
the racers to the finish line. Everyone looked strong, and the
weather was as nice as can be expected for Memorial Day weekend. A
little cloudy for the swim, windy on the bike and heating up for the
It was fun to see so many TGD colors on the course, and a great prep
for the upcoming season.