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Tuesday, February 19 , 2019, 3:13 am | Fair 39º

Sports: A Noozhawk Partnership with Santa Barbara Athletic Round Table, The Lab, and American Riviera Bank

Athletes Defy Warm Weather at Carpinteria Triathlon

Chris Braden notched the most impressive mark of the day with a sub-two-hour win in the Olympic distance

Goleta’s Chris Braden, left, and Carl Parker of Santa Barbara finished 1-2 in the Olympic distance race. Click to view larger
Goleta’s Chris Braden, left, and Carl Parker of Santa Barbara finished 1-2 in the Olympic distance race. (Sam Goldman / Noozhawk photo)

Though summer is technically over, temperatures still climbed near 90 degrees Sunday morning for the hundreds of athletes swimming along, biking around and running through Carpinteria.

Participants from as far away as Arkansas turned out for the Carpinteria Triathlon’s Olympic and sprint courses, which started and finished at the end of Linden Avenue at Carpinteria State Beach.

Running all alone up front, Chris Braden of Goleta took the win in the men’s Olympic distance in 1 hour, 55 minutes, 51 seconds — the fastest time at the USA Triathlon–sanctioned event in recent memory.

“It was hard. It was getting hot out there,” Braden said after the race — his first in Carpinteria.  “I’d say all three (legs) were pretty consistent. I don’t think one stood out from the other, really. The run — the last three miles — it was getting really hot.”

Braden claims the South Coast triathlon trifecta, sweeping the Goleta, Santa Barbara and Carpinteria events.

Last month, Braden set the course record when he won the Santa Barbara Triathlon long course.

Carl Parker of Santa Barbara took second in 2:13:56 and Logan Franks of Calabasas was third in 2:15:38 for the 1.5-kilometer swim, 40K bike and 10K run.

“The sun is just beating on you out there — you’re pretty exposed,” Parker said.

While most athletes made mention of the warm weather — about 10 degrees above what they typically race in, Parker reckoned — the heat was an advantage for some.

“The warmer the better,” said Jen Todd, who won the women’s Olympic distance in 2:23:01 — the fastest time since runner-up Savannah Dearden’s sub-2:20 performance three years ago.

A successful race wasn’t even a guarantee for Todd, who came in from Thousand Oaks and is returning from a broken ankle she suffered earlier this year.

Ventura’s Brittany Oliver won the women’s title in the sprint race. Click to view larger
Ventura’s Brittany Oliver won the women’s title in the sprint race. (Sam Goldman / Noozhawk photo)

The bike is her best leg, she told Noozhawk, but the pounding that followed it in the 6.2-mile run was a concern until she crossed the finish line without a problem.

Dearden, from Santa Barbara, finished in 2:25:55. One month ago, she took home the win in the Santa Barbara Triathlon’s long-course race and also won the Goleta Triathlon long course race.

One year after winning the Olympic race, Brittany Oliver of Ventura captured the women’s sprint title, swimming 500 meters, biking 15K and running another 5K in 56:58.

“It was hot,” Oliver said following her race. “I really felt good on the run. I generally have a stronger swim, so I felt good on the swim — plus you get to be in the ocean.”

“I’ve done this race three or four times, and I really love it,” she added. “It’s really casual and fun.”

Santa Barbara’s Cynthia Abrami took second in 1:02:13, ahead of 15-year-old Tess Edwards of Ojai, who crossed the line in 1:06:40.

“Great, great day,” said Fountain Valley’s Jacob Ford, who was the very first person to cross the line Sunday with a 51:07 victory in the men’s sprint course.

Santa Barbara’s Kyle Visin, who won the sprint last year and the Olympic in 2012, was the runner-up 35 seconds back.

“We were literally running the same pace, and I was like 20 seconds behind him, and I could not close the gap. He had an amazing race,” Visin said of Ford.

Another 15-year-old took the other sprint third place with Jake Ballantine of Santa Barbara finishing in 55:26. Ballantine is a freshman at Santa Barbara High.

Full results from the Carpinteria Triathlon can be found here.

Noozhawk staff writer Sam Goldman can be reached at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address). Follow Noozhawk on Twitter: @noozhawk, @NoozhawkNews and @NoozhawkBiz. Connect with Noozhawk on Facebook.

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