Steamboat Springs locals notch top finishes in Grand Junction triathlons


— Two Steamboat Springs residents registered top finishes in the HITS Triathlon Series last weekend in Grand Junction.

Essi Kenttala and Heather Gollnick picked up overall podium finishes.

Gollnick was the overall female winner in the half-Ironman distance. She finished the race in 4 hours, 54 minutes and 28 seconds.

Her time was more than five minutes better than second-place finisher Amber Foster. Gollnick won the race and the swim. She finished the 1.2 mile swim in 27:45, about six minutes ahead of Foster.

“It was my first triathlon in seven months,” Gollnick said. “With moving and the kids, my training wasn’t the same as I’ve done in the past. Then the altitude. It was hard, and there were some really good athletes there.”

In the Sprint division, Steamboat’s Kenttala was the third overall female. Kenttala finished in 1:25:44.

Holle Nichols was the top finisher in 1:20:42.

To reach Luke Graham, call 970-871-4229 or email


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