JP Donovan has established himself as a perennial threat to win Tahoe’s uphill mountain races — the Billy Dutton Uphill and Squaw Mountain Run. Now he’s making a case in the Tahoe triathlon scene.
The 27-year-old Incline High cross-country coach raced to victory in the XTERRA Tahoe City triathlon on Saturday, covering the Olympic distance in a time of 2 hours, 39 minutes, 48 seconds.
That was fast enough to hold off Reno’s Matthew Balzer, 33, who finished runner-up in 2:41:12. Slater Fletcher, 38, of Irvine was third in 2:48:15.
Donovan was joined in the top 10 by Rob Laurie, 48, of Incline Village, who placed ninth in 2:58:29.
A couple of regular top finishers in Tahoe endurance events posted impressive results on the women’s side.
Truckee’s Kara LaPoint, 28, the women’s age-group champion in the inaugural Ironman Lake Tahoe this past September, claimed the win while finishing 10th overall with a time of 2:58:48. Genevieve Evans, 41, of Carnelian Bay finished second among women and 14th overall in 3:03:56.
Sian Turner, 33, of Truckee was the third woman across the line, in 3:17:12.
Among other top Tahoe-area finishers, Donatas Ereminas of Truckee placed 11th in 3:01:37, and Paul Roach of Kings Beach was 17th in 3:05:49. A total of 99 athletes competed.
Sixty-two people took part in the sprint triathlon.
Brecon Welton, 25, of Palo Alto took the win with a time of 1:47:16. Riley Howard, 22, of Petaluma was second in 1:51:17 and Justin Riele, 20, of Danville rounded out the top three in 2:01:42.
Thirteen-year-old Cooper Anderson of Carnelian Bay led the local contingent, finishing ninth in 2:12:03, while Madona Casini of Tahoe City placed second in the women’s field and 17th overall in 2:20:28.
Merridy Stephenson, 32, of Reno was the top woman and 13th overall in 2:19:01. Leslie Oley of Palo Alto was third among women in 2:21:02.