Pollack goes the extra mile at World's Toughest Half

By: Todd Mordhorst Journal Sports Editor
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The miles are blurring together for Chris Pollack as he trains to take on his first full Ironman triathlon next month. But the 70.3 miles he put in on Sunday in Auburn were certainly memorable. The amateur racer from Granite Bay won the World?s Toughest Half triathlon in his third try. Pollack clocked in with a time of 4 hours, 58 minutes after swimming 1.2 miles, biking 56 miles and running 13.1 miles. ?I had no rest, no taper coming in but I felt good,? said Pollack, who put in hundreds of training miles on his bike in the weeks leading up to the race. ?I suffered on the hills during the bike a little bit. For the first two laps of the run I was feeling good. By the third lap I was just happy to finish.? Pollack was the second man off of the bike, trailing Max Biessman by nearly 12 minutes. But he made up the time with a very strong 1 hour, 28-minute run to finish the race. Pollack completed the World's Toughest Half in 2010 - his first triathlon ever. Last year he placed third. The 34-year-old geologist trains with the Sac Tri Club and Cycle Folsom. He said his new Trek bike from Bicycle Emporium in Auburn gave him a lift during the race. Bob Shebest had the fastest run of the day (1:27) to place second while Biessman settled for third. Robin Soares came on strong on the bike and run to win the women?s race in 5:54. Christine Avelar was second and Laura Eichert placed third. In the ever-popular sprint triathlon, Greg Cook topped the 112 other participants. Cook finished the 1-kilometer swim, 30K bike and 7K run in 1:59. Troy Soares finished two minutes behind in second and Sean Rockwell placed third in 2:05. Maria Hodges won a hotly contested women?s sprint race. She edged out Sara Cohen by just 22 seconds, finishing in 2:13. Dana Ginsburg claimed third place. In the men?s sprint relay, Matthew Peak, Robby Rinsky and Joel Rinsky topped the five-team field with a time of 2:17. Katja Kreher, Amy Jenkins and Jeanine Bigley teamed up to win the women?s sprint relay in 2:40. Placer High teachers Cheryl Miller-Day, Ron Hyatt and Marcia McKenzie dominated the mixed sprint relay field, winning in 2:25.. The women?s World?s Toughest Half relay included six teams and Morgan Edwinson, Nicole Genua and Lizzie Peters came out on top in 6:29. Matthew Balzer completed the first two legs of the WTH mixed relay before Aimee Balzer finished off their victory in a very strong 5:07. In the men?s WTH relay Scott Sorochak, Jay Webster and Sanjoy Goyle didn?t have any competition, winning in 6:49. In the long course duathlon, Clarence Butz dominated, finishing the 3-kilometer run, 56-mile bike ride and 13.1 mile run in 5:17.