Local triathletes heading to Duluth this Sunday

Lucas Punkari

After solid performances two weekends ago at the Paul Bunyan Triathlon Race in Bemidji, local athletes Jason Kabel and Lori Green will be looking to match their showing on Sunday in Duluth, as they will compete in the 25th-annual Brewhouse Triathlon.
For Kabel, 38, Duluth will mark a chance for a bit of redemption in the swimming portion of the event, as he will be looking to improve on a rough going in Bemidji.
“It was very rough water there and we were swimming into whitecaps in the half-mile loops that we did,” Kabel, who was third in the men’s 35-39 age group and 19th overall with a time of 2:15:43, explained.
“I did try to wear a wetsuit, which was slightly undersized, and while I had practiced in it I hadn’t swam with it in really rough water like that.
“On that first lap I was really struggling to breathe properly, and you need is something that can’t happen when you are swimming out in open water, so I was able to grab a hold of the lifeguard’s kayak and got her to unzip me.
“Once I started swimming again, my wetsuit started filling up with water, so I quickly got back to the kayak again and told the lifeguard to zip me right back up.
“By that point I had fallen back to third last in the swim thanks to that silly wetsuit episode, and I ended up losing about 4 to 5 minutes, which was pretty tough,” Kabel added.
Heading into the Duluth triathlon, Kabel has already made plans to make sure that the wetsuit situation that he faced in Bemidji won’t happen again.
“I have a brand new wetsuit so hopefully that will eliminate that issue,” Kabel said.
“I’m hoping to improve my time, and shave at least five minutes off of my swim, so I would like to come in around the 2:10 mark,” Kabel added.
Meanwhile, Green’s first ever triathlon proved to be a very successful one, as she was able to finish right behind Kabel with a time of 2:15:46, and finished in first place in ladies’ 45-49 age category.
“Bemidji was a lot of fun,” Green, 48, explained.
“Having done a few half and full marathons over the year, I thought my legs would feel that exact same after those races where you can hardly, but after this race there was no fatigue at all which was pretty amazing,” Green added.
After such a successful showing in her first ever triathlon, Green is hoping to at least match that performance come Sunday in Duluth.
“I did not expect to the time that I did in Bemidji, as I was expecting to just finish the race up in about three hours,” Green stressed.
“I was really impressed with how I did there and I’m just hoping to do that same thing once again on Sunday,” Green added.