Team Lovato

Posted: January 23, 2011 in KestrelBlog

Yes, they are a team in the best way. Not only are they husband and wife, but they support one another in their triumphs and hiccups.

Part of why there is the Team Trakkers/Rev 3, and why Kestrel is the sponsor is because of Michael. Here’s a guy who came to me late in the year asking if I can help him with a bike. It was May, well past the time for an athlete to come asking for some help. Michael had a hiccup with a sponsor and was in a pinch.

Later, he asked about Amanda and if she can race for Kestrel. Little does Michael know that really the only reason I sponsor him is to get to Amanda 🙂 Lets see, cute wife with a bit of an edge. OK, I’m in. So I put up with Michael so I can hang with Amanda and look great hanging with some cuties at races.

So, here’s Team Lovato.

Here is Amanda’s:

Growing up on a farm in Southern Maryland, Amanda started her athletic pursuits at an early age. The daughter of a jockey and an Olympic Trials equestrian rider, Amanda did her first training run at age four. That run was to keep up with her father, but soon thereafter she was running to keep ahead of her younger sister.

Two years her junior, Diana Gillam and Amanda pushed one another to win title after title in their high school region.

Excelling at the 1500- and 3000-meter races, Amanda earned a full athletic scholarship to Old Dominion University, where she was later named MVP. After two years in Virginia Beach, she transferred to the University of Tennessee, where she was captain of the Cross Country and Track teams.

In 1995, Amanda left Knoxville with a Bachelor of Science, and a strong desire to leave the intensity of college athletics behind her. Still a Lady Vol at heart, Amanda headed back to Maryland, where she reacquainted herself with an old passion: horseback riding.

After two years of moderate inactivity, Amanda embarked upon hertriathlon journey as a means to shed a few pounds, and to once again challenge herself. She took to the sport quickly, and one year later represented Team USA as an age grouper.

At her second Age Group World Championships in 1999, Amanda met her now husband Michael. She took home high honors in the race, but took home her best friend as well (BFF).

In 2001, Amanda and Michael moved from Baltimore (and Austin) to the triathlete’s paradise: Boulder, Colorado, where they currently reside with dogs, Luna and Blue, and cat, Frisco Burrito.

2002 was a banner year for Amanda, as she won nearly every amateur race she entered. A USA Triathlon All-American that year, as well as the Duathlon National Champion, Amanda’s season buoyed her confidence to race in the pro ranks in 2003.

The ensuing five years have yielded multiple Half Ironman wins, as well as four top-ten Ironman finishes, and a win at the venerable Boulder Peak Triathlon.

Amanda’s 2011 season goals are to compete in the REV3 Triathlon Series, to place top-five in competitive 70.3 races, to return to Ironman racing with a podium finish, and to bring a little style back to the women’s pro ranks, by representing color-coordinated outfits each time she toes the line.

And Michael:

Born in Wilmington, NC, but raised in Albuquerque, NM, Michael’s early roots were established in the southwestern town a mile above sea level. Immediately drawn to every sport that was offered, he dabbled in water polo, baseball, basketball and gymnastics, before settling on soccer, swimming and track as his favorites. A jack of all trades, master of none, Michael was driven to seek other athletic challenges upon his arrival at the University of Texas in fall of 1992. Soon after arriving–in full withdrawal from his involvement in team sports–Lovato entered the UT intramural sprint triathlon, his first multisport endeavor. Struggling, but enjoying every minute of the grueling hour-and-a-half race, Michael was forever hooked on the sport.

After seven seasons of amateur racing, culminating with a 1999 trip to the World Championships in Montreal, Quebec, Canada (where he met his beautiful and talented wife, Amanda), Michael joined the pro ranks. Having changed his focus from short course to Ironman racing, Michael’s first Ironman win came in 2003 at the inaugural Ironman Coeur d’Alene. A follow-up victory came in 2006 on the shores of Tempe Town Lake, as Michael was crowned champion of Ironman Arizona. Notching several top-three Ironman finishes, and three ninth-place finishes at the Hawaii Ironman World Championship (2003, 2007, 2008), Michael has established himself as one of America’s top Ironman athletes.

When not competing or training, Michael spends his spare time with Amanda and his two muscular and athletic dogs, Luna and Blue. He resides in Boulder, Colorado for much of the year. When temperatures drop below the comfort level, he packs his Subaru, his dogs, his belongings, and his wife, and heads south to Austin, Texas for warm weather training.

If the iPod is charged and functioning, expect to witness Michael rocking out to Led Zeppelin or bumping along to the Beastie Boys. When not in his “throw-back” mode, Michael enjoys listening to multiple types of music, from country to hip-hop to rock and roll.

While Michael’s formal education prepared him to teach Spanish at the high school level, his other talents have lead him to pursue a triathlon lifestyle. In addition to spending his days training and traveling to races, señor Lovato makes himself useful at North American Ironman Events by commentating, interviewing, and entertaining sponsors.

  1. […] This post was mentioned on Twitter by Kacie Darden and JeffIrvin, Kestrel Bicycles. Kestrel Bicycles said: Team Lovato: […]

  2. Chris says:

    What an awesome couple. Great role models for the sport!

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