Hometown athlete in triathlon
By By Marty Stamper / EMG sports assistant
July 25, 2003
PHILADELPIA Growing up in in this Neshoba County town, Temple Waddell always attended the Neshoba County Fair. And one of her highlights each summer was watching the participants in the annual Heart o' Dixie Triathlon.
Waddell eventually grew tired of just watching and decided to attempt the grueling sport.
Waddell plans to compete in the 24th-annual Heart o' Dixie Saturday morning. The race begins with a half-mile swim at Lake Tiak O'Khata, has a 27.5 mile bike from Louisville to Philadelphia, and ends with a seven-mile run to the finish line at the Neshoba County Fairgrounds.
Waddell, who played tennis collegiately at Mississippi College, played some sports in high school, but track wasn't one of them.
Each athlete finds a certain stage of the three-event sport to be the toughest for them.
Waddell finished 130th overall and 18th among the females in the 17th-annual Sunfish Summer Triathlon at Lake Okatibbee on July 12. A total of 218 individuals completed that race.
She'll be doing a lot more running before the year is out.
Heart o' Dixie race director Scott Hines expects another good contingent at this year's race.
The race is designated as the Mississippi State Championship and is sanctioned by USA Triathlon.
One of this year's top entrants is Chuck Engle, who is primarily known as a marathon runner. He placed ninth at the Sunfish.
Donny Forsyth of Memphis, overall champion in the Sunfish won't be on hand due to a grueling schedule.
Sunfish female champion Margaret Finley of Germantown, Tenn., won't be here either. She will be on a trip to New York. Many of her Los Locos triathlon club members from Memphis will be participating.
Four-time overall champion (1994, 1995, 1999, 2001) Joseph Curro won't be competing, but don't be surprised to see his face at the finish line or on the fairgrounds before the week is out.
Deanna Frank is the two-time defending female champion. John Noblin is the defending male champion.