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  • Jessi finishers her first international World Cup race in Portugal!


    Let's not forget out super speedy short course star!

    Lest we get to overwhelmed with the Ironman racing /qualifying pursuit - I certainly want to keep track and get some insight from our rising superstar on the World Cup circuit, Jessi Stensland. Jessi is a former camper from many years ago, who moved out to San Diego to pursue triathlons. Last summer Jessi finally made the big commitment and turned Pro. Since the start of this race season Jessi has been on a fast track up the rankings, finally breaking into the top 50 on the ITU World ranking list, and her first World Cup win a couple of weeks ago.

    In her own words, here is her season to date:

    April 1-Carlsbad 5000, Carlsbad, CA.
    I kicked off the season with a 5K PR by 42 seconds finishing in 17:36. Needless to say that gave me confidence that my running, and overall fitness, is heading in the right direction as I prepared to come out of an 8 month hiatus from racing in triathlon the next weekend.

    April 8-Pan American Championships, Clermont, FL.
    No better time than the present to jump right in! I was actually more anxious than nervous. I knew that I had put in some good training and was ready to finally get out there and see where I was. I finished 14th out of 35-a solid finish considering the company I was in. More importantly, I felt like a sponge, taking in the whole experience, and knowing what a difference having a few more races like that under my belt would make.

    April 14-Praia da Vitoria International Triathlon, Azores Islands, Portugal.
    It was my first European race and truly a dream come true-as I have wanted to race in a European city ever since I happened upon a World Cup mountain biking race in Siena, Italy in 1998. Nature provided us with some pretty rough conditions-which is one of the things I love about triathlon-you never know what you'll be up against. Had a Top Ten finish, which left me content, but hungry. All in all these first two races gave me some great experiences to take with me to the rest of the season.

    April 28-ITU World Cup at St.Anthony's Triathlon, St.Petersburg, FL.
    A very cool experience-this was big time and I loved it! Except for a
    couple of issues with turn buoys in the swim, I had an otherwise solid race with my fastest run split to date. A 14th place finish gave me my first top 50 world ranking. The goal? Keep movin' on up!

    May 13-ITU Points Race at the St. Kitts Triathlon, St. Kitts/Nevis, Eastern Caribbean
    My first 1st! What a cool place for a race-actually, it was hot as hell, but you know what I mean . . . What can I say? I managed to ride strong over some pretty crazy hills and wildly steep descents and was lucky enough, unlike some others, to avoid the monkeys, goats, and cows on the road. I also conquered some other elements of racing that I have been working on including my nutrition and the heat. Though I have to say, I think it was hearing the steel drum band and all the locals partying at the finish during the run that got me to the end, with a smile on my face!

    Next up . . . All focus is on qualifying for World Championships at the Tinman Triathlon in Shreveport, LA on June 3rd. After that? Escape from Alcatraz . . . I'll be in touch, assuming I make it out of San Francisco Bay alive . . . keep your fingers crossed!