Aug 19, 2013 - By Bruce Tippets, Sports EditorCampbell County High School senior Harrison Simmons knew before the Lander Sprint Triathlon started on Saturday morning that he would have to keep an eye out on Lander athlete Sam Hartpence down to the wire in the exhausting race for the overall title.
The Gillette teen passed Hartpence on the final stretch of the run to claim the championship. The race started and finished at the Lander City Pool.
The triathlon was made up of a 750-yard swim, a 12.4-mile bike ride, and a 3.1-mile run.
Simmons had a winning time of 1:05:51. Hartpence finished in 1:06:01.
"I did better on biking than I usually do," Simmons said. "That is what helped me to do pretty good. I got a new bike with more gears so I could go faster down hills.
Brent Phinney finished in third in a time of 1:06:40.
In the women's race, Hannah Chapin took home the title in 1:28:30. Randi George finished in the runner-up position (1:31:32), and Jennifer Lyford was third in 1:33:30.
Simmons passed Hartpence with about 1,000 meters left in the run.
"It was pretty close," Simmons said.
Simmons is a key member of the Campbell County High School cross country team. Gillette is usually one of the top teams in Class 4-A in the long-distance sport.
The Class 4-A state meet this year will be held in Sheridan after being in Douglas for a number of years.
"I'm always pretty strong in running," Simmons said of his triathlon competitions.
"That always helps a lot."
Simmons said this was the first time in his triathlon career he had enough energy at the end to beat Hartpence.
"I always ran pretty close," Simmons said.
Simmons and Hartpence had gone against each other three other times in different triathlons.
In the summer, Simmons trains to participate in triathlons all over the state.
"It was a little weird to beat him on his home course," Simmons said.
"There are a lot of triathlons in the summer that I can go to. The cross training helps me prepare for cross country.
Simmons will start cross county practice on Monday for Gillette.
"It will be pretty fun this year," Simmons said.
Hartpence entered the Lander triathlon as one of the favorites after his winning performance in Riverton last month.
"I don't have any regrets," Hartpence said.
"I had tunnel vision at the end. I know that I was working hard on the run. I couldn't do anything better or more."
Hartpence said Simmons has the full package for the sport of triathlon.
"That boy can swim and run," Hartpence said. "He deserves the win."
The top two athletes started in the final heat together.
"I looked over at my shoulder a couple of times and I saw Simmons charging hard," Hartpence said.
Simmons jumped out of the pool with the early lead over Hartpence.
"I got him about halfway through the bike," Hartpence said.
"I tried to gap him on the bike because I know how fast he can run.
I tried to get a couple of minutes on him. He has really improved his bike. He has been working hard."
The difference of the race was the run.
"He was the class of the field in the run," Hartpence said.
"I just could not go with him. I tried to respond. I just couldn't give it any more."
Results from Lander Sprint Triathlon held on Saturday morning
1. Harrison Simmons, 1:05:51; 2. Sam Hartpence, 1:06:01; 3. Brent Phinney, 1:06:40; Matt Scarlett, 1:13:04; Shad Hamilton, 1:13:04; David Toppenberg, 1:14:28; Drew Gramlich, 1:15:00; Jim Mitchell, 1:15:45; Chad Fallin, 1:16:27; Justin Hopkin, 1:17:15; Ben Zeller, 1:19:47; Bart Bowen, 1:21:06; Ty Francis, 1:26:20; Jesse Florquist, 1:27:36; Mike Sanchez, 1:28:19; Torey Racines, 1:28:29; Andrew Strike, 1:29:25; Tim Wooley, 1:29:58; Martin Hudson, 1:33:13; Vinny Alcaraz, 1:33:30; Zach Rudy, 1:35:48; Oliver Sybert, 1:36:03; Tom Wilson, 1:38:12; Benjamin Larsen, 1:38:13; Aaron Bertagnolli, 1:39:19; Dennis Van Denbos, 1:43:27; John Valades, 1:44:28; Bill Payne 1:44:52; Rusty Saltsgaver, 1:45:40; Clint Reese, 1:49:05; Todd Condelarioa, 1:50:35; Ethan Selley, 1:52:18; Kade Bell, 1:53:03; Daryl Sybert, 1:55:17; Eric Bennett, 1:57:14; Ben Oviatt, 1:58:27.
Women results from Lander Sprint Triathlon
1. Hannah Chapin,1:28:30; 2. Randi George, 1:31:32; 3. Jennifer Lyford, 1:33:30; 4. Soleianna Abernathy, 1:34:28; 5. Jennie Trefren, 1:37:08; 6. Shawna Morgan, 1:37:12; Amber Galovich, 1:37:37; Meghan Swirzcki, 1:37:50; Sharie Cundall, 1:41:19; Ava Bell, 1:41:21; Anne Even, 1:42:12; 6. Rinda Eastmen, 1:42:14; Margaret McAtee, 1:44:24; Heather Wenden, 1:47:15; Deb Smith, 1:49:55; Lisa Applehans, 1:56:10; Lindsey French, 1:57:41; Gin Reese, 1:57:47; Crystalyn Wells, 1:59:08; Denise Foss, 1:59:54; Sarah Wilson, 2:08:57; Kelly Headley, 2:18:10; Rhonda Fowler, 2:28:37; Beth Evans, 2:38:38.
Relay teams results from Lander Triathlon
1. Casper Casper, 1:21:26; 2. Runny Molasses, 1:26:34; 3. Hunsaker B's, 1:28:03; 4. Team CBT, 1:51:44; 5. Team Bowen, 1:59:04; 6. The Scott Turtles, 2:00.56.
Get your copy of The Ranger online, every day! If you are a current print subscriber and want to also access dailyranger.com online (there is nothing more to purchase) including being able to download The Mining and Energy Edition, click here. Looking to start a new online subscription to dailyranger.com (even if it is for just one day)? Access our secure SSL encrypted server and start your subscription now by clicking here.