One way to win a race is to make sure the only race is behind you, which is what Scott Tinley did Sunday in the Orange County Performing Arts Center Triathlon.
"My whole tactic was out of sight, out of mind," Tinley said.
Tinley of Encinitas came out of the water of Lake Mission Viejo in third place after the 1,500-meter swim, bolted to the lead in a pack of three in the first mile of the 40-kilometer bike ride and pulled away by the midway point.
He was soon out of sight, and on the way to victory in 1 hour 54 minutes 14 seconds, finishing more than three minutes ahead of Emilio DeSoto of San Diego for his third victory in the triathlon's four-year history. His only loss was last year, to Scott Molina of Boulder, Colo.
In the women's race, Laurie Samuelson, 33, of Carlsbad, opened up a lead of as much as a mile on the bike ride, and never let up, winning in 2:13.37, 49 seconds ahead of Sue Latshaw, 28, a plant pathologist from Berkeley who won the first triathlon she entered in 1986. Melissa Mantak, 27, of Denver was third, 31 seconds behind Latshaw.
In Tinley's wake, 43-year-old Bill Leach of Irvine dueled Peter Kain, 25, of Los Gatos. After negotiating the hills and turns of a course he called his "home-court," Leach pulled into the transition area, second among more than 1,500 entrants.
Bryan Murchison, 27, of Denver, ran down Kain for third. Kain finished fifth, and Leach finished eighth, one place and 51 seconds out of the money.