Chris Lieto was the Tinman's first finisher.

Lieto and Wee take
home Tinman titles

The California broker and
the Big Island teacher excel
in the cooler conditions

Cool weather conditions made for easy victories by two out-of-towners at yesterday's 25th annual Tinman Triathlon at Kapiolani Park.

Chris Lieto, a 33-year-old mortgage broker from Danville, Calif., was the first to finish the 750-meter swim, 40-kilometer bike ride and 10-kilometer run -- in 1 hour, 44 minutes, 21.6 seconds. Lieto's time was nearly 7 minutes ahead of second-place finisher Kurt Chambers.

Bree Wee, a 25-year-old third-grade teacher at Kahakai Elementary in Kailua-Kona, was the leading female during the entire race and finished in 1:57:08.7, eighth overall. Ingrid Rolles crossed the line 2 minutes later as the second female and ninth overall finisher.

"I'm not from here, but if it was really hot, it would've been harder," said Lieto, who heard about the Tinman from friends who live in Hawaii. "The weather was awesome today for racing. It wasn't too bad."

"It was definitely cooler, because you weren't running through lava fields, but neighborhoods and trees," added Wee, who trains on hotter conditions back home on the Big Island.

Lieto was the fourth person out of the swim at Queen's Beach and caught up to the lead competitor during the beginning of the bike route from Kapiolani Park to Hawaii Kai and back. From there, he was in control for the rest of the ride and the run from Kapiolani Park, around Diamond Head, into Kahala and back to the park.

With nobody behind him, Lieto tried to stay within his zone and fitness level to maintain his lead.

"I wear a heart-rate monitor to make sure I'm not going too hard and to make sure I pace myself," he said. "Hopefully, that pace I'm holding is going to withstand the whole race because you never know how fast someone is going to run or how fast someone is going to come up behind you."

Bree Wee was the first female to finish.

As he cruised to the finish line, Lieto gave smiles and shaka signs to spectators.

"I love the islands and I love being a part of it," said Lieto, who has completed the Ironman in Kona five times. "I have some friends from Maui and I met them out here for the race."

Wee, who won her age division at last year's Tinman, used yesterday's race to gauge herself for next month's Best of the U.S. Amateur Triathlete Competition in Gilford, N.H.

"I feel really good and excited because I know my fitness level is where I want it to be one month out from it (Best of the U.S.)," Wee said.

She saw no females ahead of her during the bike turnaround and figured she was in the lead. Wee credited the support of race volunteers for helping her through.

"It's all the audience and the volunteers," Wee said. "Everybody is screaming at you, yelling at you, cheering for you and it pumps you up.

"The owner of my bike shop back home was here rooting for me, so that was a big deal, and my husband was here. He's running across the course cheering. He gives me notes like '400 yards back is the next girl' or whatever."

There were 843 entrants in the race, and first-time competitors such as Nick Kaiser, a University of Hawaii astronomer, said knowledge of race conditions goes a long way.

"I used to train a lot on Diamond Head, so I know this like the back of my hand," Kaiser said. "It's always good to run something you've done a lot of times so you know where the hills are and where it's going to end."

But even with the luxury of a downhill from Diamond Head Road leading into the finish, not everyone found it as an opportunity to pick up the pace.

"Everyone goes a bit faster," said Kaiser, 50. "I have to look after my knees, so I can't go flat out down it."

At Kapiolani Park

Open--1. Bree Wee, 1:57:08.7; 2. Ingrid Rolles, 1:59:24.9; 3. Rachel Ross, 2:01:41.3; 4. Katherine Nichols, 2:04:13.5; 5. Susan Burr, 2:05:35.7.
15-19--1. Emily King, 2:12:47.5; 2. Deanne Soon, 2:26:31.1; 3. Leah Schretenthaler, 2:32:27.9.
20-24--1. Missy Capone, 2:24:02.5; 2. Tawny Jones, 2:26:20.3; 3. Gurusahai Good, 2:31:01.2.
25-29--1. Samantha Bird, 2:07:15.1; 2. Janell Petalver, 2:07:53.3; 3. Amy Bennett, 2:12:55.3.
30-34--1. Heidi Van Brocklin, 2:11:14.4; 2. Rebecca Lowe, 2:15:38.0; 3. Michelle Carter, 2:21:58.8.
35-39--1. Jennifer McTigue, 2:07:54.0; 2. Sandra Ferreira, 2:10:55.8; 3. Jennifer Burtner, 2:20:34.4.
40-44--1. Melinda Hayman, 2:11:01.5; 2. Pamela Kruse, 2:17:58.7; 3. Catherine Ross, 2:25:30.7.
45-49--1. Janet Higa-Miller, 2:26:01.6; 2. Laurie Foster, 2:34:41.4; 3. Julie Strait, 2:36:09.0.
50-54--1. Lori McCamey, 2:39:20.0; 2. Ana Maria Valencia, 2:39:52.0; 3. Kim White, 2:50:38.1.
55-59--1. Laura McHale, 2:25:37.3; 2. Peggy Regentine, 2:32:15.6; 3. Ruth Lockett, 2:46:24.0.
60-64--1. Beverly Csordas, 3:09:46.3; 2. Carol Murry, 3:09:46.4; 3. Laureen Brennan, 3:29:17.1.
65-69--Joy Schoenecker, 3:20:11.1.
70-79--1. Eleanor Kitagawa, 3:12:36.3; 2. Jeanne Davis, 3:35:01.2; 3. Jan Newhart, 4:01:48.7.

Open--1. Chris Lieto, 1:44:21.6; 2. Kurt Chambers, 1:51:17.1; 2. Allister Knox, 1:52:31.5; 4. Andrew Sause, 1:53:17.5; 5. Tai Blechta, 1:54:25.1.
15-19--1. John Dubiel, 1:58:40.5; 2. Ryan Hodges, 1:58:55.1; 3. Kalen Darling, 2:00:49.7.
20-24--1. Billy Wong, 1:55:22.1; 2. Kurt Sommer, 2:06:30.4; 3. Ariel Salinas, 2:09:28.1.
25-29--1. Aubrey Curtis, 1:59:56.7; 2. Ryan Hatfield, 2:01:46.5; 3. Kevin Davies, 2:02:37.4.
30-34--1. Wil Yamamoto, 1:55:41.4; 2. Derek Bird, 2:03:47.5; 3. George M Lowe, 2:04:18.8.
35-39--1. Doug Perry, 1:59:26.4; 2. Todd Blanchard, 1:59:28.0; 3. Eric Sugiyama, 1:59:39.2.
40-44--1. Mark Geoghegan, 1:56:16.2; 2. Mike Ferreira, 1:57:07.5; 3. Tore Leraand, 1:57:44.3.
45-49--1. Stefan Reinke, 2:05:14.4; 2. Mark Baker, 2:05:16.1; 3. Jeffrey Dinsmore, 2:14:25.4.
50-54--1. Leo McCarthy, 1:58:02.4; 2. Nicholas Kaiser, 2:07:34.5; 3. Tim Corrigan, 2:09:31.5.
55-59--1. Thom McHale, 2:03:57.1; 2. Dell Brooks, 2:13:48.0; 3. Tony Krantz, 2:18:50.6.
60-64--1. Ed Letourneau, 2:10:20.0; 2. Phil Gray, 2:29:25.2; 3. Stevan Yee, 2:34:22.1.
65-69--1. James McDiarmid, 2:52:16.4; 2. Peter Caldwell, 2:56:12.6; 3. Gilbert Hatter, 3:06:50.9.
70-79--1. Guy Davis, 3:23:46.3; 2. Stanley Tamashiro, 3:24:08.3; 3. Fred Hirayama, 3:43:35.2.

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