Jason Pederson
Jason Pederson, finished in second place in the Herbalife Triathlon. Photo courtesy of Herbalife Triathlon Los Angeles

Jason Pedersen of Poway finished second in the pro division of the Herbalife Triathlon on Sunday on a new course in Torrance, finishing 47 seconds behind the winner Chris Foster of Redondo Beach .

Pedersen completed the 700-yard swim, 12-mile bicycle race and 3.2-mile run in one hour, 10 minutes, 15 seconds. Foster was first, with 1:09:28, while Eric Lagerstrom of Gresham, Ore. was third, with 1:10:31.

The field of men professionals started 6:15 behind their female counterparts. Daria Pletikapa of Croatia led after the swimming and cycling portions but was overtaken by the leading group of men as they exited the transition area from the cycling to running portions.

Pletikapa was the top woman professional, finishing 11th. overall in 1:24:43.

Foster received $3,000 for his victory. Pedersen received $2,000, and Lagerstrom received $1,000. Each of the top six finishers received prize money.

The race previously had been held on a course that stretched from Venice Beach to downtown Los Angeles.

The change stemmed from a desire by Pacific Sports, which operates the race, and Torrance city officials to have an International Triathlon Union World Cup race in Torrance, according to race publicist Jan Fambro. An International Triathlon Union World Cup race has never been held in the Los Angeles area.

Most international races, including the Olympics, are held on loop courses, which allow spectators to view more of the race than a point-to-point course. The cycling and running portions of the Herbalife Triathlon were on loop courses.

The 15th. annual race begin at 6:45 a.m. with the swimming portion in the water off Torrance Beach, followed by the cycling and running portions, both of which ended on Torrance Beach.

The race consisted of six divisions: pro, Olympic distance, sprint and super sprint, along with  two youth divisions, one for triathletes ages 7-10, the other for 11-14-year-olds. There was also a separate 5-kilometer run.

The Olympic course consisted of a 1,500-meter swim, five loops of the cycling course (22.5 miles) and three full loops of the running course (10 kilometers).

The super sprint course consisted of a 250-yard swim, one loop of the cycling course (5.5 miles) and one loop of the running course on sand (1 kilometer).

The race attracted a capacity field of 1,500, about 1,000 fewer than last year’s race.

Organizers decided to limit the field to 1,500 because “the City of Torrance and Pacific Sports felt that 1,500 was a good number for an inaugural course, with the understanding that in coming years, this number would increase,” Fambro told City News Service.

The race drew triathletes from 19 states and 12 nations.

— City News Service