David Thompson won a dominating victory and his third straight Powerman Alabama title – and with it the USA Triathlon Elite Long Course Duathlon national championship - on a new course set in downtown Birmingham’s historic Civil Rights district. On the same day, second year pro Jessica Jacobs of nearby Maylene ran and biked to an equally convincing victory in her very first duathlon, capped off with a stylish cartwheel at the finish.
Thompson, the 31-year-old super biker pro from St. Paul, Minnesota ran a conservative 28:06 8k for the first run, staying 41 seconds behind fellow pro Dereck Treadwell. On the bike, which circled landmarks like the 16th Street Baptist Church where anti-civil rights terrorists set off a bomb which killed four young black schoolgirls in 1963, Thompson’s sizzling 1:18:09 for the 53km bike carved out a 4-minute lead over pro John Phillips and 5:20 over Treadwell. By the end, Thompson’s race-best 26:32 run obliterated any resistance from his rivals, as Treadwell posted a 28:16 run to take second and an out-of-gas Phillips faded to third with a 33:04 run. At the finish, Thompson posted a 2:12:46 mark on the bumpy course, 6:57 in front of Treadwell and 10:58 in front of Phillips.
While this win was expected, the strength on the bike and the run marked another step forward in recovery from inguinal hernia surgery at the end of last year. Thompson, who won three Racine Half Iron titles, both Tri 101 series events in 2007, a Boulder 5430 long course, two Olympic distance Philadelphia Triathlons and led two Life Time Fitness Triathlons on the bike, had disappointing results fighting the hernia late last year and early in 2009. At Ironman 70.3 California this year, Thompson could only muster a 12th best finish off the bike. and was reduced to walking several times on the 13.1 mile run due to a flare-up of knee tendinitis.
Jacobs’ win in 2:30:25 was emphatic, underscored by her 6th place overall against the men and her 4:49 margin of victory over Boulder, Colorado pro Uli Bromme. In the first 8k run, Bromme hung tough, just 8 second back of Jacobs’ 31:01 split. Then Jacobs broke the race wide open with a race-best 1:26:09 split which put 4:20 on Bromme. On the final run, Jacobs added 21 seconds to her lead with a 33:16 run.
For second year pro Jacobs, the win was an exhilarating reaffirmation of her emergence as a promising professional at age 32. Jacobs spent 6 and 1/2 years serving in the US Army and now does double duty as a mother and late blooming, fast-rising pro triathlete and duathlete. Last year, Jacobs posted third place finishes at Ironman Wisconsin and Ironman Florida, and recently scored a win at Birmingham’s Mercedes Marathon in 2:54:53. Jacobs has planned an ambitious Ironman season, with entries at Ironman Coeur d’Alene and Quelle Challenge Roth.
2009 USA Triathlon Long Course Duathlon National Championship
April 19, 2009
R 8k/B 53k/R 8k
1. David Thompson (St. Paul, MN) 2:12:46
2. Dereck Treadwell (Laurens NY) 2:19:43
3. John Phillips (Denver CO) 2:23:44
4. Matthew Russell (Boulder CO) 2:24:35
5. Philip Martindale 2:28:37 * M30-34
6. Kris Carpenter 2:31:40 * M35-39
7. Aaron Ainsworth 2:33:45 * M25-29
8. Josh West 2:33:53 * M25-29
9. Andrew Leonard 2:34:55 * M 25-29
10. Travis Grappo 2:35:09 * M35-39
1. Jessica Jacobs (Maylene AL) 2:30:25
2. Uli Bromme (Boulder CO) 2:35:14
3. Heidi Jane Sama (Chicago IL) 2:39:42
4. Gail Kattouf Greenville SC) (2:40:08 *F35-39
5. Kathryn Kasischke (San Diego CA) 2:41:57
6. Anne Basso (Raleigh NC) 2:43:39
7. Anne Curi Preisig (Falmouth MA) 2:44:13
8. Carrie Andrews 2:46:25 * F25-29
9. Rachel Chambers 2:47:40
10. Rebecca Villers 2:49:07 *F35-39
* age group