Towering Sam Betten scored his first triumph on Philippine soil while veteran Belinda Granger took her familiar place in the winners’ podium as the Australians led the march of victors in the inaugural Regent 5i50 Triathlon that started at Subic Bay Boardwalk and ended at Remy Field on Sunday in Subic.
Betten, a 6-foot-4, stayed within the pace in the swim and bike phase before cranking it up in the culminating run stage to build the momentum for his victory in 1:59:23.4.
Compatriot Mitch Kibby placed second with 2:01:24 while fellow Aussie Casey Munro, who was out to nail his second 5150 title in Subic, settled for third with 2:01:31.2.
“I swam conservatively and I rode with the boys who were riding really hard. Then on the run I just went for it; I just ran as hard as I could,” said Betten, who was motivated to strike gold after a runner-up finish in the Cobra Ironman 70.3 last year in Cebu.
Ageless Granger returned to the site of her previous 5i50 title romps and won a third race in Subic, logging 2:21:46.8 as she held off younger rivals Dimity-Lee Duke of Australia (2:23:24.8) and local bet Monica Torres (2:25:07.2). Thai Carole Fuchs was fourth at 2:34.00.
“For the first time all year, I actually felt like I was racing in the run. That made the difference. I’ve been swimming and biking well all year but I don’t get the run down every single time. But today, I was happy to have a great run and I was able to hold off Dimity and Monica who also had a spectacular race,” said Granger.
Alaska Tri Aspire’s Banjo Norte (2:07:56) and LC Langit (2:34:58) emerged as the top male and female Filipino elite competitors in the event sponsored by Regent Foods and organized by Sunrise Events.