Clear Lake Triathlon: 14 years of endurance

  • Published
  • By Airman 1st Class Whitney Laine
  • 92nd Air Refueling Wing Public Affairs
Airmen dove into the chilly morning water, the unanticipated cold seeping through their wetsuits. With families on the shore shouting encouragement, the athletes raced out of the water, claiming their bicycles to complete the next task. Rushes of adrenaline pushed participants through each mile. Clambering off of their cycles, the Airmen continued forward to complete the final running portion of the course. Whether first to finish or last, the Airmen claimed victory.

Team Fairchild hosted the 14th annual Clear Lake Triathlon July 17, consisting of 500 meter swim, 17.5 kilometer bike ride and a five kilometer run.

“The intent for the Clear Lake Triathlon is to give individuals an outlet to exercise and compete with others,” said Staff Sgt. Cherise Hood, 92nd Force Support Squadron fitness program coordinator. “The competition allows individuals to conquer challenges and work together to complete the course.”

Teamwork used during the relay allows squadrons to work toward a goal, but also highlights each team member’s strengths and abilities. It’s great to watch the teams collaborate, recognizing each member’s strength and work together to win, Hood added.

The print triathlon has been expertly honed to provide a physically challenging and well-charted course.

“This year's event had its best marked swim to date, which was very well-liked among the athletes,” said Master Sgt. Michael Bergquist, 92nd Air Refueling Wing Chapel operations superintendent. “There was a tremendous surge in participation from last year and a unique field of participants that gave the race added diversity.”

Many of Team Fairchild’s Airmen from first-timers to experienced triathletes participated, to include Col. Derek Salmi, 92nd Air Refueling Wing commander, marking the first wing commander to participate.

“Don’t wait until you feel ready to compete,” said Bergquist. “It's rare to feel that way; no matter how well trained you are, sign up for a race and do it. After that you'll better recognize your capabilities and will be achieving goals long before you feel ready."

Participation was broken into males, females and teams for placement and awards.

Males Elite
1st Place: Michael McCoy (1:08:30)
2nd Place: Michael Bergquist (1:11:54)
3rd Place: Erik Smith (1:17:21)

1st Place: Amanda Bergquist (1:20:36)
2nd Place: Mary Ford (1:29:16)
3rd Tiffany Johnson (1:33:06)

Team Relay
1st Place: The Real McCoys (1:17:46)
2nd Place: 93rd Air Refueling Squadron Boosters (1:20:46)
3rd Place: Sonnabend (1:27:19)