TRAC happy with triathletes’ performance

Posted on Jul 15 2022


Triathletes that competed in the triathlon competition of the Northern Marianas Pacific Mini Games 2022 pose for a group photo at the start/finish line of the course on Rota. (CONTRIBUTED PHOTO)

With their recent stint in the Northern Marianas Pacific Mini Games 2022, local triathletes will be more motivated to train.
This according to Triathlon Association of the CNMI president Manny Sitchon, who added that winning the bronze in the aquathlon was a nice little bonus.

“With the experience and momentum gained by our CNMI triathletes during the event, they will now be more motivated and train harder for future local and off-island events.”

Sitchon said with Isaiah Aleksenko, Leo Wania, Kathy Ruszala, and Heather Brook taking the bronze in the run-swim-run event, at least Team CNMI wasn’t shut out in the triathlon competition and it contributed to the CNMI delegation medaling in all nine sports of the Games.

“We are happy with the result after the NMI won the bronze medal in the team aquathlon event. It’s already a given that Tahiti and New Caledonia will win gold and silver. Almost all the medals were taken by these two countries. Their level of competition is way beyond the other Pacific Islander nations with the exception of Guam’s Manami Ijima,” added the veteran runner, swimmer, cyclist, and triathlete.

As far as the best CNMI triathlete in the Games, Sitchon said hands down Brook was the national triathlon team member that really stood out.

“Heather Brook is the best performer by anchoring Team NMI in winning the bronze. She had the best result among our national team members. Although all members really tried their best.”

The TRAC official also extended his thanks to the island of Rota for playing perfect hosts to the triathlon competition of the Games.

“The Rota Mayor’s Office was a big help with the support of its community. Led by Mayor Efraim Atalig through his assistants Ike Mendiola, Aubrey Hocog, DFEMS’ Steve Mesngon and MVA Rota’s David Atalig. All athletes and officials enjoyed the people of Rota’s hospitality especially during the awards night.”

Sitchon also said the triathlon event on Rota wouldn’t have a positive outcome without the invaluable help extended by the Mini Games Organizing Committee led by chair Marco Peter and CEO Vicente “Ben” Babauta.

Also making up the CNMI National Triathlon Team for the Games were Robyn Spaeth, Christian Villacrusis, and alternate Dylan Mister. Jay Diyco served as manager with Mick Ferris as coach.

Mark Rabago | Associate Editor
Mark Rabago is the Associate Editor of Saipan Tribune. Contact him at

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