Photograph Contributed by Mark and Lois Finanger
Aramco Brat Lars Finanger attended kindergarten through ninth grade at Ras Tanura (1985-1995). Lars now competes as a World Triathlete and has performed in triathlon events around the globe, including the 2003 Hawaii Ironman World Championships and 2004 Xterra World Championships, and will soon begin his 2005 triathlon campaign.
His father, Mark Finanger, tells us that Lars credits Aramco coaches with providing the motivation for his current success as a triathlete and that Lars still holds a Kingdom-wide swim record and an All Aramco track record.
The XTerra Maui World Championship will be aired on Super Bowl Sunday on CBS.
Support Team Finanger
December 11, 2004
I overcame a few obstacles in my quest to compete in the 2004 World Championships Xterra Maui in October.
One week before my scheduled departure, during a final training session, I was involved in a bicycle accident. The doctor informed me I had suffered a hairline fracture to my left femur and a partially collapsed lung. My orders were to stay home and recuperate. I just couldn’t give up on something I had worked so hard for, so I went to Maui.
I learned something about myself when I crossed the finish line in Maui. My mind was set to compete in this event long ago, motivated, in part, by my commitment to Team Finanger, and I intended to overcome obstacles to fulfill my mission. I earned a sixth place finish in the 20-24 age group, just five places shy of my goal of winning the World Championship in my age group.
The World Championship title was within my grasp. I had the fastest running split of the day, and I was the second swimmer out of the water in my age group. But the bike compromised the run and swim efforts. Fifteen minutes were spent fixing four punctured tires, ten minutes separated first place and sixth. Obstacles. They can make all the difference.
Overcoming obstacles. To me, this is what the Team Finanger Campaign is all about. I competed with one good lung, but my one good lung is better than those for whom I choose to race and raise money. They are my inspiration.
The 2004 Team Finanger campaign will conclude January 31, 2005. Please consider making a gift before that. Donations can be sent to the American Lung Association of Minnesota at 490 Concordia Ave., St. Paul, MN 55103 or you can make an on-line donation by accessing my web page: http://www.teamlung.org/lars.
I invite you to join me in the most important race of all: helping others overcome obstacles which will enrich their lives. Together, we can make a positive difference in the lives of others. Thanks for all your support.
Read an Xterra article written for the Decorah Newspaper.