Kelly Fillnow, 28, Charlotte, N.C.
A former collegiate tennis player and runner, Fillnow created a big buzz in 2011 when she set the American amateur Ironman record in Austria with a 9:29:49 (she was also first among age-groupers at Ironman 70.3 St. Croix.). This year, she’ll return to St. Croix, then race iron-distance races in Lake Placid and Cedar Point while repping Team Timex. Fillnow draws motivation from the memory of Sally Meyerhoff, her teammate on the cross country team at Duke who died in a cycling accident last March . “Sally inspired me to go after my dreams. I will carry a part of her with me through every race,” says Fillnow.