Jesse Thomas ran down Andrew Starykowicz to take the win at the inaugural Rev3 Florida event that had been converted into a duathlon because of high winds. Becky Lavelle grabbed the title in the women's race about 90 seconds up on Nicole Kelleher.
The swim for the age group race athletes was first to be cancelled and they only got to bike and run after a time trial start. With very heavy riptides making the swim course to dangerous the organizers decided by 7am that the Pros should also not swim and instead would run-bike-run with an opening 1.5 mile dash to spread out the field before the 56 mile bike and the 13.1 mile closing run.
Richie Cunningham, Caleb VanOrt and Jesse Thomas seemed to enjoy the opening run and reached the first transition among the leaders.
Thomas pulled away from the other speedy runners and was soon alone in the front, but a hard charging Andrew Starykowicz didn't take very long to make up the 45 second disadvantage he had after the opening run. By mile 20 he was riding with Thomas and the two kept riding hard up front, with Ben Collins about a minute behind them. Starykowicz seemed to be unable to shake Thomas, but the rest of the field started to drift away. Towards the end of the bike segment Starykowicz finally pulled away from the man with the Aviator glasses and managed to gain 3:30 in the last 10 miles. Collins reached the bike-run transition 6:30 behind the leader.
Out on the run Thomas slowly started to gain on Starykowicz and made the catch with less than a mile to go. From there Thomas ran to the title at this inaugural Rev3 event in Venice Beach in 3:26:17. Starykowicz finished second in 3:26:50 and gave props to the winner for making it a tough race. Viktor Zyemtstev ran past Ben Collins to take the final podium spot in 3:29:38.
Lauren Goss and Leslie Smith were quickest in the 1.5 mile opening run and had a 12-second advantage on a group that included Nicole Kelleher, Malaika Homo, Jessica Jones-Meyers and Alicia Kaye. Everything was still possible and now the fight for the title and prize purse was on in earnest.
Kaye soon charged to the front of the race on the bike, but Becky Lavelle moved up nicely and was soon riding with Kaye. Homo and Kelleher were not that far off either but there was a bit of a shift among the leaders by the time they finally came back to the bike-run transition area. Homo and Lavelle led the charge, with Kelleher and Spieldenner down over 2:30 and all other contenders even further back.
Homo was first out of transition, Lavelle though took charge on the run and moved soon into the lead. After the closing 13.1 mile run Lavelle came away with the win in Venice Beach in 3:54:00. Kelleher ran well and finished second about 90 seconds later, with Jones-Meyers in third place in 3:59:18.
Venice Beach, FL / October 28, 2012
1.5m run / 56m bike / 13.1m run
1. Jesse Thomas (USA) 3:26:17
2. Andrew Starykowicz (USA) 3:26:50
3. Viktor Zyemstev (UKR) 3:29:38
4. Ben Collins (USA) 3:29:48
5. Kaleb VanOrt (USA) 3:31:07
1. Becky Lavelle (USA) 3:54:00
2. Nicole Kelleher (USA) 3:55:28
3. Jessica Jones-Meyers (USA) 3:59:18
4. Lesley Smith 3:59:31
5. Lauren Goss (USA) 4:00:47