Letters

Letters 05-23-2016

Examine The Priorities Are you disgusted about closing schools, crumbling roads and bridges, and cuts everywhere? Investigate funding priorities of legislators. In 1985 at the request of President Reagan, Grover Norquist founded Americans for Tax Reform (ATR). For 30 years Norquist asked every federal and state candidate and incumbent to sign the pledge to vote against any increase in taxes. The cost of living has risen significantly since 1985; think houses, cars, health care, college, etc...

Make TC A Community For Children Let’s be that town that invests in children actively getting themselves to school in all of our neighborhoods. Let’s be that town that supports active, healthy, ready-to-learn children in all of our neighborhoods...

Where Are Real Christian Politicians? As a practicing Christian, I was very disappointed with the Rev. Dr. William C. Myers statements concerning the current presidential primaries (May 8). Instead of using the opportunity to share the message of Christ, he focused on Old Testament prophecies. Christ gave us a new commandment: to love one another...

Not A Great Plant Pick As outreach specialist for the Northwest Michigan Invasive Species Network and a citizen concerned about the health of our region’s natural areas, I was disappointed by the recent “Listen to the Local Experts” feature. When asked for their “best native plant pick,” three of the four garden centers referenced non-native plants including myrtle, which is incredibly invasive...

Truth About Plants Your feature, “listen to the local experts” contains an error that is not helpful for the birds and butterflies that try to live in northwest Michigan. Myrtle is not a native plant. The plant is also known as vinca and periwinkle...

Ask the Real Plant Experts This letter is written to express my serious concern about a recent “Listen To Your Local Experts” article where local nurseries suggested their favorite native plant. Three of the four suggested non-native plants and one suggested is an invasive and cause of serious damage to Michigan native plants in the woods. The article is both sad and alarming...

My Plant Picks In last week’s featured article “Listen to the Local Experts,” I was shocked at the responses from the local “experts” to the question about best native plant pick. Of the four “experts” two were completely wrong and one acknowledged that their pick, gingko tree, was from East Asia, only one responded with an excellent native plant, the serviceberry tree...

NOTE: Thank you to TC-based Eagle Eye Drone Service for the cover photo, taken high over Sixth Street in Traverse City.

Home · Articles · News · Features · The Starkermann Challenge
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The Starkermann Challenge

Erin Crowell - May 10th, 2010
The Starkermann Challenge: 4 events, 3 days, one tough race
By Erin Crowell
Running is hard. So are triathlons, the multi-sport event that
combines running, swimming and biking into one race. Now, imagine
those disciplines spread out through the course of one weekend.
This is the Starkermann Challenge – a three day, four event race that
starts with a run on Friday, a triathlon on Saturday morning, 20- to
40k time trial bike ride on Saturday evening, wrapped up with a
duathlon (run, bike, run) on Sunday morning.
Whew!
Think you’re up for the challenge? You’ll get your chance May 14-16 in Gaylord.

“STRONG MAN”
The race lives up to its name – Starkermann translates to “strong man”
in German, a word that describes both male and female athletes that
take on the entire race weekend. However, participants have the option
to compete in individual events and/or compete on a relay team.
“You can pick and choose,” says Kenny Krell of 3 Disciplines Racing,
the company that handles and coordinates all aspects of the race.
“It’s definitely something for both beginners and seasoned athletes.”
Those options include two competition levels: the more advanced
Starkermann and the Starkermann Junior, with distances geared toward
the beginner competitor. Friday evening hosts a one-mile seed sprint
for Juniors, a 5k seed run for Starkermann. On Saturday morning,
athletes hit the Gaylord Sportsplex pool for a portion of the
triathlon, which includes a 2.2 mile run, 20k bike and a 400m swim for
beginners; a 4.4 mile run, 30k bike and 400m swim for Starkermann.
Saturday evening is a 20k time trial bike ride for Juniors and 40k for
Starkermann. The challenge ends on Sunday morning, with a duathlon:
one mile run, 10k bike, two mile run for Juniors; 5k run, 30k bike and
5k run for Starkermann.
Events take place all over Gaylord, at venues that include the Otsego
Club, Tree Tops Resort and the aforementioned Sportsplex.

TOUGH COURSE
One of the most challenging areas of the course includes the hill
behind Tree Tops Resort – “Alp du Huez, as the locals call it,” says
Dr. Donovan Adendorf, a chiropractor at West Bay Chiropractic in
Gaylord, and five-time Starkermann participant.
“I haven’t done the whole challenge, but the bike portion is the most
challenging thing in Michigan,” Adendorf says.
The South Africa native says Starkermann helps him prepare for the
triathlon season, a summer that includes at least one Ironman (2.4
mile swim, 112 mile bike, 26.2 mile run) and two to three triathlons
per month.
“I’m really slow,” Adendorf says modestly. “Starkermann kicks the
season off for all of us in the north.”
Krell agrees.
“We designed the whole thing so it would prepare people for the
upcoming race season,” he says. “For example, last year we had sleet
and snow and it was 28 degrees. The lowest wind was 20 miles per hour.
A bunch of people emailed us and said, ‘I didn’t know what you meant
by preparing us for the season, but now I know!’ They start
remembering everything they went through in Starkermann.”
Weather is always part of the challenge. The race consistently runs in
unpredictable weather patterns, mostly held in freezing temps and
during some type of precipitation.
“Starkermann never has great weather,” says Krell. “In all the years
we’ve hosted and the years I participated, I can only think of one
time that it was nice.”

3 DISCIPLINES
Krell participated in Starkermann before he took on the fulltime job
of running 3 Disciplines, a race company that—along with the Gaylord
race—is host to 50 multi-sport races a year, held throughout Michigan
and across the country.
Krell and partner Annmarie Kern started 3 Disciplines eight years ago,
launching the company in Arizona and bringing it back to their home
state of Michigan. Now, the company calls Gaylord home, an oasis from
the hectic world of racing.
“We have a summer home up here and three years ago we came up after
one of the races. I said to Annmarie, ‘I just have to live up here,’”
says Krell. “You just feel calmer and less stressed.”
Athletes from around the country will invade Gaylord on the weekend of May 14.
“Last year we had around 200 athletes and represented five states,”
says Krell. “It’s a weekend where there’s typically not much going on
in Gaylord, so it’s great having a group coming for an entire
weekend.”
Krell says whether you’re a weekend warrior or at the top of your
class, Starkermann is a race that has something for everyone.

Ready for the challenge? Register for the Starkermann Challenge,
happening May 14-16 in Gaylord, by visiting 3disciplines.com and
clicking on the events tab. Email your questions to
info@3disciplines.com or call 231-546-2229.

 
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