Smyers, Kemper take U.S. pro tri championships in NYC

Hunter Kemper  Credit: Phil Cole/Allsport
New York (August 12, 2001) Karen Smyers continued her remarkable comeback from thyroid cancer Sunday by winning the USA Triathlon Elite National Championships in New York City, holding off a hard-charging Barb Lindquist on the run. Laura Reback was third.

Hunter Kemper took the men's race, confirming his status as one of the country's top triathletes and capturing his third national title. First-year pro Brian Fleischmann was second, with Kemper's 2000 Olympic teammate Nick Radkewich in third.

The race, a point-to-point affair that included a swim in the Hudson River, a ride into the Bronx and a run past several landmarks in Central Park, also included an age-group competition under the name the New York City Triathlon. Produced by USAT and the New York 2012 Committee, the race was meant to showcase the city's ability to host the Olympics in 2012.

The win brought to six the number of national championships Smyers has captured in her storied career. It was her third victory for the year, added to wins at the Rock 'n' Roll Triathlon in Cleveland and the Wilkes-Barre Triathlon in Pennsylvania. She finished the morning's race in 1:57:55, with Lindquist in 1:58:12 and Reback in 1:59:02.

"Barb kept the pressure on the entire run," said the versatile Smyers, who also has two world championships and a Hawaii Ironman victory to her name. "I knew I was in trouble with about a half-mile to go when I saw my husband and daughter and I went over to give them a high-five and my husband waved me off and told me to run."

The men's race's finish was even closer, with Kemper who led wire to wire sealing his win by fending off Fleischmann to come home in 1:41:20, just over 40 seconds clear of Fleischmann's 1:42:02. Radkewich kept the top three close with his 1:42:54.

Humid and cloudy conditions eventually gave way to rain as the women were finishing their bike rides and the men were starting their runs.

Smyers will next race in Boston and Los Angeles before returning to the Ironman World Championships in October. Lindquist, Reback and Kemper will be part of the U.S. contingent at the Goodwill Games in Australia.

Results:

New York City Triathlon
August 12, 2001, New York, N.Y.
1.5K swim - 40K bike - 10K run

Men
1. Hunter Kemper (Longwood, Fla.) 1:41:20
2. Brian Fleischmann (Jacksonville, Fla.) 1:42:02
3. Nick Radkewich (New London, N.H.) 1:42:54
4. Andy Kelsey (Cupertino, Calif.) 1:43:09
5. Alec Rukosuev (Apopka, Fla.) 1:43:17
6. Kerry Classen (Bakersfield, Calif.) 1:43:21
7. Abe Rogers (Lincoln, Vt.) 1:43:24
8. Michael Smedley (Colorado Springs, Colo.) 1:44:33
9. Joe Umphenour (Seattle, Wash.) 1:44:39
10. Greg Remaly (Bloomsburg, Pa.) 1:45:36

Women
1. Karen Smyers (Lincoln, Mass.) 1:57:55
2. Barb Lindquist (Jackson, Wyo.) 1:58:12
3. Laura Reback (North Palm Beach, Fla.) 1:59:05
4. Gina Derks Gardner (Davie, Fla.) 1:59:18
5. Gina Kehr (Redwood City, Calif.) 1:59:26
6. Kelly Rea (Marietta, Fla.) 2:00:21
7. Kristen Lasasso (New York, N.Y.) 2:00:41
8. Jessi Stensland (La Jolla, Calif.) 2:01:03
9. Desiree Ficker (Colorado Springs, Colo.) 2:01:47
10. Laurie Hug (Ambler, Pa.) 2:02:57

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