Saturday, April 3, 2010

Domingo and Coates take 2010 Red Hills Tri titles

There was still a slight spring chill in the Tallahassee air at 7:30am on Saturday, 3 April 2010. It wasn't enough to dissuade almost 300 competitors in the 2010 Red Hills Triathlon from jumping into Maclay Gardens' Lake Hall for a 1/3-mile swim, followed by a sixteen-mile bicycle ride and a five-kilometer run. When it was all over Dan Domingo of Jacksonville had won the tenth annual event in a time of 66:51, while Pensacola's Mark Sortino triumphed in the master men's division finishing sixth overall in 71:13. Shannon Coates won the women's title in 74:35, defeating Stephanie Liles, the 2008 and 2009 women's champion. Jules Kariher of Gulf Breeze was top among women masters, clocking 81:46 and placing 43rd overall.

Defending champion Thomas Barton was among the first athletes out of the water and was the first to leave the transition area on his bicycle, but fell out of contention during the ride--Domingo's chance to shine. Turning in the second-fastest cycling leg of the morning, Domingo was already 300 meters into the run before the next athlete, Charles Kemeny, had started the 5K leg. Barton made up some ground during the run, but was unable to catch the athletes that had passed him during the bike leg--Domingo, Kemeny, and James Thompson. Kemeny ended the event as runner-up behind Domingo in 68:24, Thompson was third in 69:41, and Barton fourth in 70:51.

The top men maintained their positions during the five-kilometer run, but that wasn't the case in the women's competition. After the best women's bicycle ride of the morning, Heidi Thompson started the run leading the women's division and had already covered 200 meters when Shannon Coates started running. Coates answered with the fastest five-kilometer leg by a woman at the race, and passed Thompson about halfway through the run. Stephanie Liles caught Thompson to take the runner-up spot in 75:09 while Thompson hung on for third in 75:30, but Coates won going away.


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