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19-year-old Lukas Verzbicas celebrates his first career ITU World Cup victory in Banyoles, Spain. (Janos Schmidt/ITU)

Best of 2012: By the Numbers

Take a look back at significant facts and figures from a memorable 2012 season


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2 – The number of age group wins in two days by women’s 70-74 standout Beatrice Burns (Hamden, Conn.) at the 2012 USA Triathlon Age Group National Championships. Burns, who was honored in Sports Illustrated’s “Faces in the Crowd” for her efforts in Burlington, also won her age group at the Ironman World Championship to cap an amazing year.

3 – The number of podium finishes by U.S. women in the 2012 ITU World Triathlon Series, which matched the 2011 total for an all-time high. Laura Bennett (Boulder, Colo.) was third in San Diego in May; Sarah Groff (Hanover, N.H.) placed third in Hamburg, Germany, in July; and Gwen Jorgensen (St. Paul, Minn.) finished second at the Grand Final in Auckland, New Zealand, in October.

4 – The number of Olympic Games Hunter Kemper (Colorado Springs, Colo.) has finished as the top American male. Kemper was 14th in London and in the process became the only men’s athlete to finish all four Olympic Games triathlons. Kemper was seventh in Beijing (2008), ninth in Athens (2004) and 17th in Sydney (2000).

6 – The number of American elites to earn top-10 finishes at the Ironman World Championship in October. Mary Beth Ellis (Boulder, Colo.) was fifth on the women’s side, followed by Linsey Corbin (eighth, Missoula, Mont.), Caitlin Snow (ninth, Brockton, Mass.) and Amy Marsh (10th, Austin, Texas). Andy Potts (Colorado Springs, Colo.) and Timothy O’Donnell (Boulder, Colo.) finished seventh and eighth, respectively, in the men’s event.

7 – Sarah Groff’s finish in the 2012 ITU World Triathlon Series to rank as the top American for the second straight year. Groff had four top-10 finishes on the WTS circuit and was fourth at the 2012 Olympic Games, a finish that also counted toward the series rankings.

8 – Races won by USA Triathlon National Team member Sarah Haskins (Colorado Springs, Colo.) for a career-high total. Haskins excelled at Olympic-distance, non-drafting racing and also captured her second career USA Triathlon Elite National Championship title in September in Buffalo, N.Y.  

9 – The career-best finish at the ITU World Triathlon San Diego for Manuel Huerta (Miami, Fla.) to secure a spot on the 2012 U.S. Olympic Triathlon Team. The post-race celebration of a lifetime dream realized by the Cuban-born Huerta was one of the most memorable moment of the year.  

10 – Seconds away from a medal by Sarah Groff at the 2012 Olympic Games in Hyde Park. Groff inspired many with her gutsy effort on the run, which saw her move into medal content on the final 2.5-kilometer loop. The U.S. and Australia are the only nations with a top-four finish in all four women’s Olympic Games triathlons.  

13 – The number of medals won by U.S. paratriathletes to top the medal count at October’s ITU Paratriathlon World Championships in Auckland, New Zealand. By taking 36 percent of the medals, the U.S. positioned itself as an international leader in the build up to the 2016 Paralympic Games in Rio, the first Paralympics to include paratriathlon.

18 – The number of world titles won on American soil by U.S. age-groupers at the ITU Cross Triathlon World Championships, held in May alongside the XTERRA Southeast Championship in Pelham, Ala.   

19 – Age of Lukas Verzbicas (Colorado Springs, Colo.) when he became the youngest U.S. athlete in history to win an ITU World Cup event at June’s Banyoles (Spain) ITU World Cup. Verzbicas also won the Dallas ITU Pan American Cup in June for his first career elite win. His season was cut short by a serious bike accident in July, but he has shown remarkable progress in his recovery and aims for a return to racing in 2013.

34:10 – The race-best run split uncorked by Gwen Jorgensen to run her way to second place at the ITU World Triathlon Series Grand Final in Auckland, New Zealand, in October. Jorgensen’s finish matched her career-best showing on the ITU WTS circuit.

40 – The number of triathlon medals captured by U.S. athletes of all levels — age group, elite and paratriathlon — at the 2012 ITU World Championships to rank third in the medal count behind Australia and New Zealand, who each finished with 47.

2,100 – Number of age-groupers to participate in the inaugural ITU World Triathlon San Diego in May. The event, which features amateurs racing in the same venue as the world’s top elites, was one the largest first-year races in triathlon history.

– The number of registrants for the 2012 USA Triathlon Age Group National Championships in August in Burlington, Vt. The total was a record number for the two-day event, which has seen participation more than double since 2010.  

158,000 – The record number of annual members reached in 2012 by USA Triathlon for an all-time high. USAT’s annual membership has grown from 21,341 in 2000 to 68,696 in 2005 to today’s record total.

For more on USA Triathlon's Best of 2012, visit our year-in-review section.

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Best of 2012