SUBIC – Mitch Robins ended fellow Australian Sam Betten’s 5150 reign with a fiery windup while Guam’s Manami Iijima upended Dimity Lee Duke with a solid start as they crowned themselves the inaugural Black Arrow Express 5150 pro champions here yesterday.
Robins fought Betten practically on even terms in the swim and bike stages then unleashed a strong finishing kick in the last of the two-loop run part to foil the three-peat champion’s bid and nail his second Philippine championship in the 1.5k swim, 40K-bike and 10K run race.
“In any day, a win is a good day. Sam (Betten) is such a tough competitor, he’s beaten me so many times. But today, I simply managed the heat a little bit better and that just gave me an advantage in the end,” said Robins, who also won here in 2013.
But the 30-year-old champion of last year’s Bali, Indonesia triathlon and former winner of Ironman 70.3 Japan and Port Macquarie settled for runner-up honors in the last two Subic 5150 races which Betten ruled to complete a rare three-peat.
Robins timed 1:54:56, besting Betten’s 1:55:58 in completing a three-title romp in wet conditions last year. He had leg clockings of 18:32 (swim), 57:10 (bike) and 36:08 (run).
Meanwhile, Iijima practically secured the women’s pro crown right in the swim leg where she posted a remarkable 20:29 clocking for a huge three-minute cushion over Duke.