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Old 08-29-2005, 13:49   #1
Dan
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Special Forces dominates military-team competition in triathlon series

RELEASE NUMBER: 050829-01
DATE POSTED: AUGUST 29, 2005

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Special Forces dominates military-team competition in triathlon series
By Staff Sgt. Christopher Stanis
1st Special Forces Group (Airborne) Public Affairs Office


FORT LEWIS, Wash. (USASOC News Service, Aug. 29, 2005) — In an unprecedented achievement, Fort Lewis based 1st Special Forces Group (Airborne) took the first, second and fourth places for military teams in the third race of the 2005 Fort Lewis Triple Threat Triathlon series Aug. 20.

The Triple Threat series, in its thirteenth year running, consists of one triathlon per month in June, July and August. In the race, participants must swim a half mile, bicycle 15 miles and run 3.1 miles.

The triathlon series attracts 200-300 service members and civilians each race to compete in a variety of team and individual categories, according to Triple Threat Series director, Minerva Hohaia.

This year’s final race was unique in that for the first time the military team competition awarded points toward the Fort Lewis Commander’s Cup, said Hohaia. The Commander’s Cup is annually awarded to the unit that earns the most points in installation-sponsored team sports tournament throughout the year.

With the increase in deployments over the past few years military participation has dropped slightly, said Hohaia. Commander’s Cup points were offered in hopes to raise those numbers. “This is a very popular event,” Hohaia said. “We want to keep it alive.”

High endurance events like triathlons require similar physical and mental toughness that is required of Special Forces Soldiers, according to Lt. Col. Guy Lemire, 1st Special Forces Group executive officer.

“Triathlons and Special Forces both ask us to push ourselves to the absolute limit, beyond what we think we’re capable of,” noted Lemire, who cycled for one of the 1st Special Forces Group teams.

The first place team consisted of Sgt. Joshua Evans (swim), a newly assigned Group member who is currently finishing Chinese language training; Capt. Ioannis PapaDopoulos (bike), 1st Special Forces Group’s 3rd Battalion surgeon; and Staff Sgt. Pedro Ochoa (run), a Human Resource specialist in the group headquarters. Second place was taken by Capt. Johnathon Kupka (swim), Headquarters Support Company commander in 3rd battalion; Lemire (Bike); and Sgt. 1st Class Bob Tucker (run), noncommissioned officer in charge of the Group parachute rigger detachment. Tying things up with fourth was 1st Lt. Chris Lee (swim), an intelligence officer with 2nd Battalion, 1st Special Forces Group; Sgt. Major Scott Hawkins (bike), 1st Special Forces Group Operations sergeant major; and Sgt. Major Brian Jaenicke (run), 1st Special Forces Group Intelligence sergeant major.

Of the nine team members, three are in their 40s and one is 50, showing that regardless of age Special Forces Soldiers are, capable of accomplishing more than the average person.

“The young (Soldiers) who are thinking about going Special Forces will see that we don’t just sit around; instead of being talkers, we’re doers,” said Hawkins who, at 50 years old, still competes in grueling events like triathlons because he simply enjoys them.

“I’ve always been active,” he said. “Plus, it keeps me fit so I can keep up with my kids.”

In addition to challenging people’s abilities, the Triple Threat series allows civilians in the local area an insight in to the military world. “This is a great community connector,” said Lemire. “The race was well organized and we’re lucky to have it on Fort Lewis.” With that, there’s only one thing Lemire had left to say: “We look forward to defending the Group’s title next year.”
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Old 08-29-2005, 13:49   #2
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Competitors launch in to the swim event of the 2005 Fort Lewis Triple Threat Triathlon’s third race Aug. 20. (photo by Staff Sgt. Christopher Stanis, 1st Special Forces Group Public Affairs Office)
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Old 08-29-2005, 13:50   #3
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Lt. Col. Guy Lemire, 1st Special Forces Group (Airborne) executive officer, warms up prior to taking the cycling leg of the 2005 Fort Lewis Triple Threat Triathlon Aug. 20. Three teams from 1st Special Forces Group competed in the military team competition and placed first, second and fourth, earning points toward the Fort Lewis Commander’s Cup. (Photo by Staff Sgt. Christopher Stanis, 1st Special Forces Group Public Affairs Office)
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Old 08-29-2005, 13:50   #4
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Capt. Johnathon Kupka, Headquarters Support Company commander for 3rd battalion, 1st Special Forces Group, emerges from American Lake after completing the swim leg of the 2005 Fort Lewis Triple Threat Triathlon Aug. 20. Three teams from 1st Special Forces Group competed in the military team competition and placed first, second and fourth, earning points toward the Fort Lewis Commander’s Cup. (Photo by Staff Sgt. Christopher Stanis, 1st Special Forces Group Public Affairs Office)
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Old 08-29-2005, 13:50   #5
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Staff Sgt. Pedro Ochoa, a Human Resource specialist with 1st Special Forces Group Headquarters, crosses the finish line in the run leg of the 2005 Fort Lewis Triple Threat Triathlon Aug. 20, taking first place for his team in the military team competition. Three teams from 1st Special Forces Group competed in the military team competition and placed first, second and fourth, earning points toward the Fort Lewis Commander’s Cup. (Photo by Staff Sgt. Chris Stanis, 1st Special Forces Group Public Affairs Office)
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Old 08-29-2005, 14:23   #6
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Frickin awesome, Congrats 1st Special Forces Group
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Old 08-29-2005, 14:27   #7
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Nice work 1st Group.
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Old 08-29-2005, 15:14   #8
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Dan thanks for the pics!

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Old 08-29-2005, 21:17   #9
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Thanks Dan,
Good to see 1st Group doing something

V/R,
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