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Treeathlon 2020

Treeathlon a Tri-riffic Success

By Erin McShane

Wow what a weekend SUTT had! On Sunday, March 1st, nearly 421 elite, college, and novice athletes competed in the 16th annual Stanford Treeathlon. The sprint triathlon course included a 650m swim through beautiful Westpoint Harbor, a 20K bike around Pacific Shore Center and Google’s Redwood City Campus, and finally a 5K run in the same area.

For our Stanford team, the race started at about 4am when we resisted the temptation to snooze our alarm clocks. We trekked to Redwood City, where we dawned head lamps, and set up transition, tents and food before the first athletes arrived. Huge thanks to Anne and Amanda for everything they did to make setup and all thereafter smooth. Their great leadership resulted in many hands making light(er) work. We set up in time for a cold and windy draft legal race start at 7:30 am. For the men, Stanford alumni and elite athlete Kevin Bishop took first place with a chip time of 54:37.3 Andrew Roos, also a Stanford Alum, took second in the Elite Divison.

Above: Ben with “the pack” during the cycle. PC: Eliza Dawson

Stanford also had a strong showing from our four collegiate athletes, Ben, Brian, Elena, and Margaret. Ben led our men with a third place finish and time of 56:27.4. He put in some serious work at this race, staying with “the pack” (including 2 elite athletes) for the first two legs. He was especially happy about staying with the pack for the swim. He claimed “no one seemed to want to push too hard on the bike” which is a testament to their fitness considering they still biked almost 26mph. Brian also clocked in under one hour with a final time of 59:46.3. Brian didn’t have any comments. He lets his work speak for itself.

Above: Brian allowing his work to speak for itself. PC: Eliza Dawson

Elena led our women through the finish line with a speedy 1:06:28.5 finish time and second place finish. Elena said, “I was really happy with how the race went and super grateful for all of the cheering we got from the team!” She came out of the water first, a feat she attributes to good sighting (Thank you Coach Marissa for teaching us to sight you walking all over Avery). Elena put out during the bike to stay with top female competitor, Katie Patrick. Though she typically dislikes the run, Elena said she decided to “just have fun” this time. See picture below.

Above: Elena smiling her way through the run. PC: Eliza Dawson

Both Elena and Margaret were thankful their hard work on transitions paid off in the race. Margaret jokingly noted, “transitions were definitely my fastest segments.” Though her transitions were technically the fastest, the rest of her race was also. Margaret rounded out the top three female finishers with a 1:08:29.5. She said the first lap was rough, but catching a draft behind Coach Mark saved her bike. “Holding on for my dear life (at speeds I could never sustain nor pull on my own) reminded me of drafting off of Ryan, Nick, and Dylan along Canada all last summer -- so thanks to the guys and all other teammates who have let me hold onto their back wheel!” Margaret also thought some of our tougher team workouts (Polo Field brick and open water swike practices) this quarter helped condition her mentally and physically for the challenges of DL racing. Special S/O to Cayla, Elena, Anne and Nico for helping her pull on the bike for that extra 10 seconds of pain. Also, for those who didn’t see Coach Mark cross the finish line in DL, you missed out. Probably the highlight of the day seeing him with his doggo!

Above: Margaret hanging on for 10 seconds of pain. Thanks coach Mark for the draft! PC: Eliza Dawson.

In the afternoon, the weather remained cool with mostly cloudy skies. The classic race began with collegiate athletes and age group racers started afterwards. Results for the classic race can be found at We didn’t have any attached racers for classic, but we had some VP’s during that event, nonetheless. Our lifeguarding team successfully prevented any near-death incidences, the traffic safety team prevented any collisions, and our MC (master of ceremonies if you’re curious what that actually stands for) announced (almost) every finish.

Above: Sam vigilantly keeping watch over the classic swimmers. PC: Eliza Dawson

Our MVP volunteer squad was the food crew (led by Irene). This group begged for more bagels than could be eaten by 421 hungry triathletes and 30-some hungrier volunteers. That’s A LOT of bagels. This also allowed a post-race bagel scavenge which Nick thoroughly enjoyed observing.

Above: Krishna and Lucas dancing a happy dance for a safe, fun, race. A great team, and multiple garbage bags full of bagels. PC: Eliza Dawson

There are so many incredible people that made this race great, so there’s no way I could write an all-inclusive blog. To sum up, I’m going to quote Krishna’s Kleenex-worthy Slack post. “[a well-run triathlon] was only possible because of YOUR efforts, most of which go unnoticed and happen behind the scenes. Personally, I love YOU all for being such nice people!... YOUR positivity about everything is contagious. I feel so happy when I am around YOU.” If you’re reading this, then you’re probably one of the many people who supported this event and support this team. So thanks, best team. Oxytocin is great.

For more information and full race results, visit For more information about the Stanford Club Triathlon team follow @stanfordtriathlon on Instagram or visit

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