Road To The Olympic Games

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Spain's Mario Mola races to 1st at triathlon World Series opener

Mario Mola began his bid for a fourth successive world triathlon championship in style when he won the series opener in Abu Dhabi by three seconds on Friday.

Canada's Tyler Mislawchuk finishes 11th after crash setback

Spain's Mario Mola, pictured at last season's Montreal event, ran to a first-place finish at the triathlon World Series opener in Abu Dhabi on Friday. (Graham Hughes/The Canadian Press)

Mario Mola began his bid for a fourth successive world triathlon championship in style when he won the series opener in Abu Dhabi by three seconds on Friday.

Mola made his move on the 10-kilometre run with 1,700 metres to go, and Alex Yee of Britain hung off his shoulder to finish second in his series debut.

A closing sprint from Fernando Alarza of Spain lifted him from fifth to third.

Canada's Tyler Mislawchuk, of Oak Bluff, Man., finished in 11th place after bouncing back from a crash.

"I swam and rode very well, but unfortunately the whole race field came together," said Mislawchuk.

Alexis Lepage of Gatineau, Que., was 45th and Victoria's Matt Sharpe did not finish.

Vincent Luis of France led out of the men's swim. Mola and Yee were among the chasing pack on the cycle leg that caught the leaders.

Hayden Wilde of New Zealand was first on the run, and Yee passed him halfway in, then Mola passed the Briton.

In the women's race, Zaferes was first out of the swim, and led a pack of six at the end of the 20-kilometre cycle leg, a minute up on the chasers.

Zaferes made a break at the start of the run, followed by fellow American Taylor Spivey. They finished 1-2, Zaferes ahead by 26 seconds. Jessica Learmonth of Britain edged Taylor Knibb to prevent an all-American podium.

The second leg is in Bermuda on April 27.

With files from CBC Sports

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