Athletes tackle Beaton Classic

By: Heidi Ulrichsen - Sudbury Northern Life

 | Aug 11, 2014 - 11:13 AM |
Buddy Green is seen here crossing the finish line at the Beaton Classic Aug. 10 with son, Hudson, 4. Green won in the race's solo male category. Photo by Heidi Ulrichsen.

Buddy Green is seen here crossing the finish line at the Beaton Classic Aug. 10 with son, Hudson, 4. Green won in the race's solo male category. Photo by Heidi Ulrichsen.

Unique Sudbury multi-sport event started in 1981 to honour former mayor

Buddy Green had some moral support in the form of his four-year-old son, Hudson, as he completed the Beaton Classic Aug. 10. The little boy was all smiles as he ran over the finish line with his father.

“That's always fun,” said Green, who finished first in the Beaton Classic's solo male category, with a time of 2:14:58. “He's our little bundle of joy, so when I get to finish with him, that's always special.”

The race consists of a one-kilometre swim, 27-kilometre bike ride, four-kilometre solo canoe paddle and a seven-and-a-half kilometre run.

Although he won in his category, Green said he'd been sick in the week preceding the race, and he got pretty dizzy at the end.

By finishing the race anyway, Green accomplished a personal goal. Although he's competed in the Beaton Classic at least a dozen times since he was a teenager, this is the first time he's done it by himself.

“It's something I've wanted to do for awhile now,” he said.

The Beaton Classic was started in 1981 in honour of former Sudbury Mayor Bill Beaton, an avid paddler.

Race director Neil Phipps said the event is unique, as he doesn't know of any other multi-sport events combining swimming, cycling and running with paddling.

“It brings together a lot of different elements of the Sudbury endurance sport community,” he said.

“So you get cyclists who wouldn't necessarily always be hanging out with paddlers or runners. This is a nice day at the beach, and they all get to mingle at the end of the summer.”

This year, the Beaton Classic featured 130 competitors, most of them taking on the event in teams of two or four. Green was among the 18 participants who completed all four legs of the race by themselves.

The fastest time of the day came from the winners in the four-men category, the team Beaton Up!, recording a time of 2:01:51.

John Larmer, the team's paddler, said it's easier to be fast when the events are split between four people.

“I mean, it's remarkable people do it solo,” he said.

The key to success is finding people competent in each discipline, he said.

“I'm the paddler,” said Larmer, who has been competing in the Beaton Classic since 1989. “The paddle is kind of the tricky part of the Beaton, because most people don't do it.”

Amanda Kosmerly, a Beaton Classic veteran who has done the event many times both as a solo athlete and as part of a team, won in the solo female category with a time of 2:25:25.

Just a few months ago, though, she wasn't sure she'd be able to compete in the event. Back in the winter, she suffered a severe concussion in a snowboarding accident.

“I was off work and out of commission for about three or four months, so this is quite special to be able to participate,” Kosmerly said.

She attributes her success to being an athletic generalist.

“I'm a jack of all trades, master of none, which kind of got me through today,” she said. “I'm a decent swimmer, decent biker, decent runner, but not a pro at any of them.”

The winning Four Mixed team was Yogis and the Bear, who came in with a time of 2:25:49, and the winning Four Women team was APTT, who were clocked at 2:45:01.

When it came to pairs teams, Team Bradbury won in the women's pairs with a time of 2:58:25, and The Bat's Wrath won in the mixed pairs with a time of 2:19:20. The one and only men's pairs team was Team Hanson, with a time of 2:52:41.

The Beaton Classic has become something of a family reunion for Karl Skierszkan. This year, he arranged for four teams of friends and family members to enter the event.

“Since the beginning, I've done all my recruiting at weddings,” said the local occupational therapist.

“This past year, I was at my nephew's wedding, and I was talking to the best man, and my nephew came up and said 'Look out, he's just trying to get you into the Beaton Classic.'”

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Heidi Ulrichsen

Heidi Ulrichsen

Staff Writer


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