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Ackerlund captures Polson Triathlon title

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POLSON – This weekend saw a little more than 50 competitors take part in the 6th annual Polson Triathlon, delivering personal bests, incredible personal experiences and a new course record set at the Olympic distance race.

Twenty-one-year-old Helena-native and University of Montana senior, Erika Ackerlund covered the 1.5-kilometer (approximately one-mile) open water swim, 40-kilometer (24.9-mile) bike ride and 10-kilometer (6.2-mile) run with an impressive time of 02:06:13 to secure the first ever overall victory by a woman. 

Ackerlund’s time shattered the women’s course record set by Sue Huse in 2013 by a full eight minutes. The former women’s record holder and two-time women’s champion Huse finished second with a time of 02:15:43 followed by Erin Lyons with a time of 02:24:18.

“I came here two years ago,” Ackerlund said. “I was pretty new (to racing) back then.” In that race, Ackerlund finished 19th overall and third in the women’s class with a time of 02:31:25.

Since then, Ackerlund has been making her mark in the triathlon world. Back in November, she won her third NCAA Women’s College Triathlon National Championship and in April, was first among women and third overall during the Grizzly Triathlon in Missoula.

In the men’s race it was Great Falls’ Joel Bischoff who broke the tape first for the men with a time of 02:09:36 ahead of Trent Renshaw (02:13:53) and Chuck Dumke (02:14:12).

It was Bischoff’s first attempt at the Polson Triathlon. 

“We have family in Columbia Falls,” Bischoff said. “We were visiting them this weekend and decided to come and try this race.”

Bischoff is no stranger to triathlon competition nor the podium.

As a member of the Air Force Triathlon Team, Capt. Bischoff placed second at the Armed Forces Triathlon Championships back in June at Point Mugu, California. 

Recently, Capt. Bischoff just returned from competing in Germany during the 2017 World Military Triathlon Championships as a member of the U.S. Armed Forces Triathlon Team.

In addition to fitness, the triathlon is also a fundraiser. All proceeds from the race benefit the Mission Valley Aquatics Center and the 

center’s local youth swimming programs.


2017 Polson Triathlon results:

1   Ackerlund, Erika 02:06:13 

2   Bischoff, Joel 02:09:36 

3   Renshaw, Trent 02:13:53 

4   Dumke, Chuck 02:14:12 

5   Carnes, Jesse 02:14:47 

6   Huse, Sue 02:15:43 

7   Shipley, Landon 02:20:24 

8   Macomber, Timothy 02:23:31 

9   Lyons, Erin 02:24:18 

10 Tri2Compete (Troy Brackey / Shea Carlson /Jason Delaney) 02:29:15 

11 Brown, Ira 02:30:55 

12 Swinson, Renee 02:31:10 

13 Brown, Jenni 02:31:50 

14 Ives, Jordan 02:36:26 

15 Rockin Raindrop (Ben Montgomery / Chris Town / Austin Allen) 02:40:58 

16 Catch us if you can (Michelle Botner / Becca Bontadelli /Anthony Bontadelli) 02:40:59 

17 Young, Mitchell 02:41:01 

18 Seeley, Malia 02:43:08 

19 Schweitzer, Matt 02:43:49 

20 Olson, Tim 02:44:02 

21 Leeper, B.J. 02:47:47 

22 Schaus, Jackie 02:47:59 

23 Vanichkachorn, Greg 02:48:43 

24 Jacobs, Carrie 02:48:51 

25 Thompson, Jeff 02:49:24 

26 Platko, Cynthia 02:49:30 

27 Ives, James 02:51:53 

28 Schwarz, Stacey 02:52:02 

29 Goin 4 it (Sean Mcmurphree/Dennis Labonty/ Larry Richards) 02:52:19 

30 Ratner, Michael 02:53:39 

31 Peterson, Sarah 02:54:45 

32 Accounting for Eyes and Teeth (Ryan Gage/Jeff Bird/Geoff Heninger) 02:57:17 

33 Yellowrobe, George 02:58:58 

34 Grotbo, Mark 02:59:34 

35 St Joseph AAA Team (Emily Hall/ Nikki Mckinsey/Wade Shipley) 03:02:48 

36 Schuber, Charlie 03:02:53 

37 Krantz, Joshua 03:03:43 

38 Doerfler, Bonnie 03:05:01 

39 Nutty Lakes (Patrick Lake/Shannon Mclake/Josh Lake) 03:05:42 

40 Soiled Goods (Alison Montgomery/Jessie Fischer/Jay Brooker) 03:08:40 

41 Ballinger, Britt 03:10:38 

42 Schlagenhaufer, Ron 03:10:47 

43 Wiegand, Leann 03:10:59 

44 Doherty, Francis 03:13:20 

45 Munsell, John 03:22:25 

46 Grainey, Brennin 03:25:05 

47 Gage, Krista 03:27:08 

48 Bird, Melea 03:27:08 

49 Smith, Tyana 03:27:10 

50 Firestone, Austin 03:40:14 

51 Perez, Jody 03:44:30 

52 Lickey, Jeremy 04:23:53

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