A weather delay for a week, due to north pole temperatures tracking in, led to a thrilling national qualifier in Minocqua, Wisc. Green Bay’s Jennifer Chaudoir goosed the Moose by racking a 57:14 overall win on the course, the only 10Km racer to break the buck, or an hour in this case.
Chaudoir, the owner and personal trainer at Greenbay’s Fitness Made Easy, glows talent galore that she shared with everyone who gave chase. One example, she won 2013’s Phillips Flurry Qualifier for the women’s class in another sub-hour effort, 55:38. Read that account here.
Recovering from Lymes disease added a new dimension to her competitions: Faith. She told me, “I am still recovering from the disease, and feel weak when I train, but race day I have so much. I look to the sky before each race with teary eyes and desire in my heart and say, ‘Its all up to you!’ And, HE comes through for me every time—61 races in 2013 while recovering from Lymes disease; 90% of those races, I won first female.”
The course fell under a new blanket of dense-weight snow just hours before the event, resulting in a tough first lap in the two-loop course. The herd of racers tracked it down so the second lap became a moose-walk—before you think that is slow, think again. A moose can simply trot at 20 mph. It’s only right that a dear woman won a race named after the largest of the deer species . . . .
Master-Senior men laid track in taking the top three finishes in the class. Jim McDonell, Series Director for the Braveheart Snowshoe Racing Series, won over the master, Jim Graupner, by several minutes. Both are perennial medalists at the national championship level. John Wilke, a longtime racer in the Northern woods, finished in 1:07. William Litzer, a youngster at 24 by comparison to his group, finished fourth while David Riedel, Milwaukee, took the next spot.
Pam Ogden, an Eau Claire snowshoe heroine, took silver in the class followed by Stevens Point racer, Deborah Hoover, Milladore’s Michelle Czlapinski and Woodruff’s Sarah Steele, who finished Three Amigo style: together!
Ogden nailed an admirable fifth at the 2013 DION Midwest Snowshoe Championships raced at Cable’s near-legendary course. At 2012’s Frisco USSSA DION Nationals, she captured a medal in her age-class in that great altitude with the tough snow. She appears regularly on the snowshoe racing tour, pleasing everyone with her terrific sense of humor.
In the 5 Km race, Ben Van Male, Milwaukee, won overall with an outstanding track of 26:15. Taking advantage of his track and field days at U of W, Milwaukee, Van Male is a top personal fitness trainer at. Additionally, he has coached track and field at the high school and collegiate levels. At Your Edge to Success, he is a certified Newton Natural Running Coach, teaching the advantages of that unique shoe that I reviewed here with one of my most favorite article titles.
Dave Rau, Dorchester, took silver while Russ Blennert, Westboro, raced the women’s winner, Barb Wilke of West Bend, for third overall. She goosed it at the end and led him over the line by 24 seconds to win the women’s Moose Track class and bronze overall.
Mary Dunphy, a hometown Minocqua racer, edged Rhinelander’s Amy Laxton for the class silver finish by only 26 seconds. Special note goes to USSSA National Medalist, Roddie Larsen winning her class—and all the hearts—with her race.
Photos courtesy Minocqua Winter Park, Wisconsin