Kelly Dippold has accomplished something very few individuals achieve. She is a world champion. A 50-year-old Overland Park resident, Dippold won her age group (50-54) at the World Triathlon Championships Oct. 22 in New Zealand. She was timed in 2 hours, 28 minutes, 21 serconds for the 1,500-meter swim, 40-kilometer bicycle ride and 10-kilometer run. “It (winning) was the validation of a lot of hard work,” she said. “I got a gold medal and satisfaction.” And she got to make the trip with her mother, Dorothy Burke, 74. “It was great to see another country,” she said. “Everyone was in their country’s uniform, so it was a neat way to meet people from around the world.” It was fitting that Kelly took her mom on the trip. It was her mother who got her started in swimming. “My mother put me and my brother in the pool at the YMCA (in the St. Louis area) at a young age, and I loved it,” she said. Dippold became an accomplished swimmer, competing for the University of Kansas. She swam the 200 individual medley, 400 individual medley and 200 breast stroke for the Jayhawks. At one time she held the Big Eight Conference record in the 200 breast stroke. She graduated from KU in 1986. Part of the training for the KU swimming team involved the triathlon. “We had to do a triathlon in the fall as part of our training program,” she said. She continued to participate in triathlons for two years after college. It was training for a triathlon that Dippold met her husband, Bob. “I met him on a bike ride out in the country (in the St. Louis area),” she said. In order to qualify for the New Zealand triathlon, Dippold first had to perform well in the national event. In August 2011 she competed in the National Triathlon in Burlington, Vt. She placed second in the 45-49 age group, and the top 18 qualified for the world championships. Dippold turned 50 and moved to the next age group for the World Championships. In age group youth sports, it is considered best to be at the top of your age group, while in adult sports, there is an advantage to be at the bottom of your age group. Her coach, Ken Welsh, isn’t surprised by her success. “Kelly is a wonderful person, always willing to share her knowledge, never comes across as too good to help other athletes that are less talented,” he said. “Although she has a swimming background in her youth, she is faster now than she’s ever been, constantly amazing everyone in the local triathlon community.”
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It's time to preview the 913 area high school spring sports season ... from A to Z.
The game was scoreless with less than 16 minutes remaining.
Anna Page isn’t sure what motivated her to enter the Ultimate Football Experience Sweepstakes, but she and her son, John, enjoyed the experience March 8-9 in Phoenix.