Fast times and family fun in the Tinman Triathlon

Staff Writer
Mount Shasta Herald
Megan Tannaci of Gazelle, shown starting the third and final leg -- a five mile run -- was the second fastest solo female finisher at the 2012 Mount Shasta Tinman Triathlon.

A complete list of results for the 2012 Tinman Triathlon, held Sept. 2 at Lake Siskiyou, are on the web at:

For event photos, click here

The 30th staging of the Mount Shasta Tinman Triathlon featured blistering speeds and a fun, family atmosphere.

The Tinman is presented by the Rotary Club of Dunsmuir yearly to raise funds for local, regional, and world-wide community service projects.

This year's overall male winner – Jack Calhoun of San Francisco – knocked almost a full five minutes off his pace-setting win last year with a time of 59 minutes and 21 seconds.

Last year's overall women's category winner, Joanne Gilchrist of Chico, repeated her winning performance this year with a time of 1:11:34.

Top team honors were taken this year by "DerBlitz" from Cottonwood who crossed the finish line at 1:03:58, besting last year's top team by one second shy of eight minutes.

Megan Tannaci of Gazelle took the second place women's overall medal with a time of 1:20:32. Third overall honors went to Kate Sjoberg from Cottonwood.

Sean Molina of Chico, with a fast time of 1:03:11, earned the second men's overall medal. Third place men's overall honors were won by Geoff Harkness of Mount Shasta who crossed the finish line at 1:07:15.

Second top team honors were taken by Yreka teens Matt Ward, Austen Dowse, and Bailey Fisher. Their time was 1:08:24. The "Redding Beer Dawgs" with team members Bruce Farrell, Curtis Newcomb, and Mark Cibula took third place overall team honors crossing the finish line at 1:09:59.

The Mount Shasta Tinman Triathlon has always prided itself as a fun, family affair, according to co-director Will Newman. "This year's staging proved that in numerous ways," he said. "A good example of the family connection is shown by the two business winners both of which represented Cave Springs Resort in Dunsmuir. First place winner 'Cave Springs' featured father Louie Dewey and daughter Shannamar Dewey. They were anchored by Darin McQuoid and finished at 1:35:05.

"Cave Springs Too finished second in the business category with a time of 1:41:45. The team was made up of Dewey daughter D'Arcy Dewey, Dan Daugherty, and John Bowman."

Newman said the importance of families in the Tinman was represented for the fourth year by a large contingent from the Corning and Orland area calling themselves "Friends of Eric." The group is made up of family and friends of Yolo County Sheriffs Deputy Eric Christopher who remains in a care center after experiencing a serious heart event. In 2009 the Friends of Eric entered their first Tinman in both team and solo categories to show support for Deputy Christopher – their father, husband, and friend. They have returned to compete every year since then.

The group features many young triathletes including this year's preteen team winners 8-year old Hayley Christopher, 6-year old Emerson Christopher, and 7-year old Mckynzie Huntley. These very young triathletes were accompanied on all legs of the race by an adult.

Megan Tannaci, a Mount Shasta High School graduate and longtime swim team member in her youth – she was Megan Parker then – was surrounded by her family at the Tinman.

Her husband Isaiah and three children gave her encouragement at each transition.

"They're awesome supporters," said Megan, who did the swim leg on a team several times in past Tinmans, but went solo for the first time last year.

Her success this year came despite a long family trip to Great America and Marine World and a late arrival home in Gazelle about eight hours before the Tinman starting time.

Race co-directors Dr. Jack Haling and Will Newman reminded the gathered athletes why they were all there at the opening safety meeting. They told everyone that the number one rule was to be safe and the number two rule was to have fun. But they were not there solely to swim, bike, run, and have fun. The Tinman is the Rotary Club of Dunsmuir's major fundraiser.

Funds raised from the Tinman and other Club fundraisers allowed the club last year to donate to help keep the Dunsmuir Library open, donate money (along with the Rotary Clubs of Mount Shasta and Weed) to help Mercy Mount Shasta purchase a digital mammogram machine, to support the Dunsmuir Christmas Food Basket program, along with supporting many other community activities.

The co-directors wish to thank Tinman major sponsors Lake Siskiyou Camp Resort, Law Offices of Leonard and Lyde, and Mount Shasta Ambulance for their support in putting on this event. They also gratefully acknowledge the hard work of over fifty club members and volunteers without whom the event simply would not be. The group of volunteers included 12 students from Dunsmuir High School.

Newman invites anyone interested in learning about the Rotary Club of Dunsmuir or Rotary to call him at 530-235-5735.