The event took place this past Saturday and featured 47 children from Jackson, Cape Girardeau, East Prairie and Sikeston, ranging in age from 6-15.
The triathletes competed in distances ranging from 100 yard swim, two-mile bike and 1/2 mile run for the youngest competitors, to a 200-yard swim, 5.7 mile bike ride and a 1.5 mile run for the oldest athletes.
The event began at 8 a.m. with swimming first, followed by cycling and running in that order. Heat was a bit of a factor, but all athletes who began the race did in fact finish.
Local swim team athletes had the greatest degree of success, with five of the possible six division titles going to youngsters with particular skill in swimming.
Amanda Allen brought home first place for the hometown crowd as the Sikeston native won the 8-9 year old girls division. Allen, competing in her first triathlon, certainly showed no first-time jitters as she cruised to the victory.
Cailin McGinnis, Joseph Gray and Alex Anne Troxel, all of Jackson, won the 10-12 girls, 8-9 boys and 13-15 girls division respectively.
Troxel was very well rounded, solid in all three events. McGinnis showed admirable speed in the pool, and Gray won his division with particularly impressive bike and run legs.
Sam Gramling, of Cape Girardeau, turned in perhaps the most impressive showing of the day with a win in the 10-12 boys division. Sikeston's Shane Stewart won a particularly hard fought battle for first place i the 13-15 boys division.
After swimming 200 yards, cycling 5.7 miles and running 1.5 miles, Stewart was able to hold off determined performances by Dakota Trevino and Mark Fraser, both of Sikeston, to nip them by a mere 44 and 39 seconds respectively.
East Prairie's Lydia Thomure had a stroke of bad luck. She held a slim lead during the bike leg when an unfortunate miscommunication resulted in her completing four laps of the bike course instead of the three that her competition rode.
The additional distance not only added valuable time to her ride overall, but it also undoubtedly increased her level of fatigue for the subsequent 1.5 mile run.
Despite the stroke of misfortune, Thomure finished second in her division, challenging the eventual champion, Troxel. Had she not had to bike the extra distance, who knows what may have happened?
Race finishers included Emily Eaves, Kayla Priday, Katie Bloemer, Morgan Fraser, Dakota Trevino, Mark Fraser, Shane Stewart, Kaitlyn Turnbow, Lauren Medley, Aidan Marshall, Timothy Moy, Kenneth Moy, Amanda Allen, Mary Kendig, Ashton Young, Betsy Borgsmiller, Sarah Klosterman, Mary Liz Klueppel, Lovell Cox and Abby Jones.
Others include Will Bloemer, Gavin O'Brien, Mary-Claire Gleason, Sam Gleason, Tanner Bryant, Jake Pewitt, Gratten Allen, Brady Culver, Evan Deere, Colton Young, Jimmy Obermark, Isaac Engram, Jacob Stewart and Ben Priday. All of the above are from Sikeston.
Other finishers were Cailin McGinnis, Alex Anne Troxel, Kristian Troxel, Connor McGinnis, Joseph Gray, Riley Talburt and Miles Puls of Jackson.
Finishers from Cape Girardeau included Sam Gramling and Megan Morris. East Prairie finishers were Austin Smith, Lydia Thomure and Cody Borders.
All proceeds from the race will go to benefit the Kenny Rogers Children's Center.