Sunday, May 17, 2009
Lukas Verzbicas Wins A Big One
Lukas Verzbicas,a 16-year-old freshman at Lincoln-Way Central, earlier this year ran a national record 14:18:42 at an indoor 5,000-meter run in Boston. If he stuck to pure running, there's no question he would be among the best ever in our state. But Lukas has raised the bar even higher. He swims and bikes, too, and is full triathlon mode with a goal of making the Olympic tri team in 2012 and 2016. He took a big step on Saturday while the state's other top runners were preparing for sectionals and state meets in the weeks ahead. Lukas won the ITU Pan American Triathlon Confederation Junior Championships in Oklahoma City. Distances were 750 meters in the water, 20K on the bike and 5K on the run. The victory, in 58:03, included a dazzling 15:48 on the run. The title earned him a spot in the ITU Junior World championships this September in Australia. As a good friend pointed out to me, it looks like Lukas won't be running cross-country, at least early in the season next fall. By the way, Benjamin Kanute of Geneva finished third in 58:29 and also will be heading Down Under. Lukas and Benjamin are members of the Multisport Madness club.