By Justin Hunter
GALVESTON, Texas – A former Churubusco graduate is proving age won’t keep her from targeting her goals.
Anne Brasier, 63, is an elite triathlon athlete who recently returned home after competing in the World Triathlon Grand Final in Rotterdam, Netherlands. The Sept. 17 event hosted more than 300 of the world’s best triathlon athletes, ages 60-64.
Brasier, who now lives in Texas, finished 27th overall and was the 11th American to finish the race. Great Britain was the only country to top Team USA.
The athletes competed in an Olympic-distance triathlon, which begins with a 1500-meter swim, followed by a 40k bike and ends with a 5k run. In between events, participants had transition runs and gear to change into. The transitions count for the overall time.
“The transition times in the local races, I do only take under a minute,” said Brasier. “The course in Rotterdam took at least five minutes.”
Brasier claims that she could have finished a 10k run instead of the 5k run at the end, but says it’s probably best the way it was.
“My mind says I can do the long distances, but my body is saying, I’m an old lady, and to just dial it back,” said Brasier.
Brasier trains all year long, sometimes up to 15 hours in a week. A recent hip surgery that repaired her torn tendons and labrum kept her from physical activity since she returned from her recent trip abroad.
“I’m about to go crazy,” said Brasier. “I’m not running, I’m not on my bike and I’m not swimming. So, this is harder for me than working out. Just sitting here in my house is just driving me nuts.”
To compete at the national competition, which took place prior to the international competition, Brasier had to finish in the top 10 percent. The top 10 national race finishers, or those that completed the national race under a certain time, received an invite to compete in Rotterdam.
Brasier started triathlon racing in 1983 in the old Bud Light Series in California, but took a break from the sport when she married and had kids. She rejoined the competitive circuit in 2008, about 25 years after first entering the sport.
Traveling abroad and competing for Team USA is nothing new for Brasier. Her first time came in 2011, when she finished sixth in her age group in Beijing, China. Brasier also competed in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada in 2014.
Brasier first learned to swim at Chain’ O Lakes State Park, in Albion, where she was a lifeguard in her youth. Little did she know her time there would one day lead her to the North Sea in the Netherlands.
Brasier’s time swimming in high school led her to the Purdue Swimming team in college. The day she graduated, she moved out west to San Diego. She met her husband there and moved to San Francisco, and then to Boston. The Brasier’s have lived in Galveston, Texas, for the past 26 years, where she can train eight months outside.
Although it’s been years since she’s lived in Churubusco, Brasier says her roots will forever be in Turtle Town.
“It’s a great place to be from,” said Brasier. “I think it’s true what they say about a Midwest work ethic. I was the only daughter in the family, and it didn’t matter. I was expected to take care of my family’s farm like the boys. I give a lot of credit to my dad for showing me I can do anything, no matter what gender I am. That was pretty unusual for back then.”
Brasier believes triathlons are a great way to get involved and live a healthy lifestyle, all in one.
“I think it’s a really friendly and accepting sport,” Brasier said. “If you want to give it a try, go ahead and do it. You’ll find open arms and a supporting environment. It’s just wonderful.”