Two athletes who finished in the Top 5 last year moved up to the top of the leader board at the 2019 Falmouth Sprint Triathlon. After finishing fifth and fourth respectively, Sam Mackie and Eric Wheeler duked it out for first place on Sunday, July 14, at Surf Drive Beach for this year’s title. With East Falmouth professional triathlete Ray Botelho sitting this year’s race out, the field was wide-open to be taken.
Mackie, a 25-year old resident from Charlestown, defeated Wheeler by 30 seconds to take this year’s title after finishing in fifth place overall a year ago. With a time that was 23 seconds faster than a year ago, Mackie got to the line to break the tape and take the title.
Wheeler, a local who has been a staple in the Falmouth Sprint Tri for some time, saw his overall time slip a few seconds, but moved up the medal stand. The 43-year old physical therapist raced to a 49:11 finish this year, after running 49:04 in 2018. Last year his faster time was good for fourth place, but this year he crossed the line second overall for his best finish ever at his home race.
Finishing third was up-and-comer Yohan Auguste, of Amherst. The 21-year-old had his best finish at the Falmouth Sprint ever with a time of 50:00 flat. He improved his time by 37 seconds from a year ago and went from an eighth place finish a year ago up to third. Keith Putnman, of Marston Mills, claimed fourth overall. Putnam ran 50:43. He was ninth last year.
Paul Gaffuri, a 39-year old from Somerville, rounded out the Top 5. He finished in 51:07.
Falmouth High School assistant ice hockey coach Dickie McEvoy cracked the Top 10. McEvoy was eighth overall in 52:08.
In the women’s race, Ursula Nickerson, of Jamaica Plain, took first overall. The 28-year old ran a time of 54:18. Eastham’s Katie McCully, 53, was second with a time of 54:53. Tracy Birmingham was Falmouth’s fastest female resident, and third overall. Birmingham finished with a time of 55:36.
Sara Zeigler, of West Falmouth, was the second fastest Falmouth finisher. She crossed the finish line in 56:01. Katrin Davidsdottir, of Wayland, rounded out the Top 5. She ran 57:07.