USA Triathlon Names Age-Group Triathletes of the Year, Presented by Garmin

By USA Triathlon | Feb. 26, 2014, 12 a.m. (ET)

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. — USA Triathlon today announced Kirsten Sass and Dan Stubleski as the top amateur triathletes of 2013. The awards headline the announcement of the 2013 Age-Group Triathletes of the Year, presented by Garmin, an honor awarded annually by USA Triathlon’s Age Group Committee.

USA Triathlon will announce its 2013 Duathlon, Off-Road and Elite Athletes of the Year later this week.

"We again had an outstanding class of awardees for Athletes of the Year,” said Steve Sutherland, chair of the USA Triathlon Age Group Committee Athlete of the Year Subcommittee. “The growth of triathlon and multisport under USA Triathlon leadership is reflected in the quality of the Athletes of the Year selected from our large talented pool of candidates."

A long-distance specialist, Stubleski (Washington, Mich.) was the top U.S. amateur finisher and second overall at the Ironman 70.3 World Championship. He was also the top American and fourth overall finisher at the Ironman World Championship, and he was the fastest amateur at Ironman 70.3 Steelhead.

Sass (McKenzie, Tenn.) posted first-place overall finishes at a number of events, including the Hy-Vee Triathlon, New York City Triathlon and the Memphis in May Triathlon. She also won the F30-34 age group at USA Triathlon Olympic-Distance National Championships and finished second in her age group the following day at Sprint Nationals.

Masters Triathlete of the Year accolades went to Christopher Thomas (Easton, Conn.) and Susanne Davis (Carlsbad, Calif.). This was the second consecutive year as the top masters athlete for Thomas, who was the top masters finisher at Ironman 70.3 Worlds. He was also the top masters finisher at the Timberman Sprint Triathlon and Ironman 70.3 Syracuse.

Davis also had a standout year, finishing as the top masters triathlete at USA Triathlon Olympic-Distance Nationals and the Ironman World Championship. She also was the first amateur female finisher at the San Diego International Triathlon and the Encinitas Sprint Triathlon.

William (Chris) Wren (Arlington, Va.) and Jeni Winegarner (Kailua-Kona, Hawaii) earned Grand Masters of the Year honors. Wren won the 65-69 age group at the Ironman World Championship and Ironman Lake Placid. He also won his age group at the Columbia Triathlon and the Kinetic Half.

Winegarner topped the podium in the 55-59 age group at the Ironman World Championship and Ironman Texas. She was the first 50-plus finisher at the Alaska State Triathlon, Lavaman Waikoloa Triathlon and the Iron Mango Mini-Monster.

The 2013 USA Triathlon Age-Group Triathletes of the Year and honorable mention selections are as follows:

Men’s Triathlete of the Year: Dan Stubleski (Washington, Mich.)
Honorable Mention:
 James Chesson (Bedminster, N.J.), Andrew Drobeck (Missoula, Mont.), Brian Duffy Jr. (West Chester, Pa.), Clay Emge (Tyler, Texas), Colin Riley (Aurora, Ill.)

Women’s Triathlete of the Year: Kirsten Sass (McKenzie, Tenn.)
Honorable Mention:
Susanne Davis (Carlsbad, Calif.), Corrie Kristick (Houston, Texas), Heather Lendway (St. Paul, Minn.), Samantha Morrison (Goldsboro, N.C.), Darbi Roberts (New York, N.Y.)

Men’s Masters Triathlete of the Year: Christopher Thomas (Easton, Conn.)
Honorable Mention:
Shane Arters (Morristown, N.J.), Doug Clark (Morristown, N.J.), Kevin O’Connor (Medina, Minn.), Greg Taylor (Yankton, S.D.), Ritch Viola (San Francisco, Calif.)

Women’s Masters Triathlete of the Year: Susanne Davis (Carlsbad, Calif.)
Honorable Mention:
Ann Davidson (Portland, Ore.), Kelly Dippold (Overland Park, Kan.), Lisbeth Kenyon (Barrington, R.I.), Leslie Knibb (Washington, D.C.), Steph Popelar (Parker, Colo.)

Men’s Grand Masters Triathlete of the Year: William (Chris) Wren (Arlington, Va.)
Honorable Mention:
Dave McNeely (Glen Arm, Md.), Michael Orendorff (Pueblo, Colo.), Robert Plant (Woodside, Calif.), Bob Scott (Naperville, Ill.), John Weber (New York, N.Y.)

Women’s Grand Masters Triathlete of the Year: Jeni Winegarner (Kailua-Kona, Hawaii)
Honorable Mention:
Madonna Buder (Spokane, Wash.), Ellen Hart (Denver, Colo.), Carol Hassell (West Palm Beach, Fla.), Karen McKeachie (Ann Arbor, Mich.), Diane Ridgway (Arvada, Colo.)

About USA Triathlon
Founded in 1982, USA Triathlon is proud to serve as the National Governing Body for triathlon – the fastest growing sport in the U.S. Olympic Movement – as well as duathlon, aquathlon, aquabike, winter triathlon, off-road triathlon and paratriathlon in the United States. USA Triathlon sanctions more than 4,300 races and connects with more than 550,000 members each year, making it the largest multisport organization in the world. In addition to its work with athletes, coaches and race directors on the grassroots level, USA Triathlon provides leadership and support to elite athletes competing at international events, including International Triathlon Union (ITU) World Championships, Pan American Games and the Olympic and Paralympic Games. USA Triathlon is a proud member of the ITU and the United States Olympic Committee (USOC).