Part Two of the PIC Double
April 8 – XTERRA New Zealand Championship (Rotorua)
April 8 – Tagaman Triathlon (Saipan)
OUT IN THE OCEAN: In the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands this Saturday, just seven days after winning the XTERRA Saipan Championship, Olivier Marceau and Renata Bucher will try to take home the PIC Double awards. The man and woman with the fastest combined XTERRA and Tagaman time will receive $500 and seven free nights accommodation and a complimentary Gold Card (three meals a day in a choice of three restaurants) at the Pacific Islands Club. The Tagaman competition is a road tri in its 17th year and combines a 2k swim with a 60k bike and 15k run.
Marceau, who is going for his third straight PIC Double award, has a huge edge with an 18-minute head start over his closest double competitor James Kennedy from China. Bucher, after her second Double title in a row, will have a tougher challenge, with just 7 minutes to play with against her nearest competition Jamie Whitmore. Whitmore won Tagaman last year in 3:12:05, 10-minutes ahead of Bucher, but Bucher still won the Double as she carried a 12-minute advantage from XTERRA.
Here’s a list of the international competitors who raced in XTERRA Saipan, have enjoyed the festivities of the Saipan Sports Fest, and will compete in the Tagaman on Saturday.
Pro Men XTERRA Time
Olivier Marceau, 33, FRANCE 2:35:06
James Kennedy, 28, CHINA 2:53:52
Margus Tamm, 38, ESTONIA 3:02:58
Ryan Decook, 26, MICHIGAN 4:03:04
Amateur Men XTERRA Time
Courtney Cardenas, 32, CALIFORNIA 3:06:21
Arnoud Garderen, 34, NETHERLANDS 3:21:14
Paul Chetwynd, 45, JAPAN 3:26:57
Mario Deicher, 45, SWITZERLAND 3:35:52
Aaron Sanchez, 36, MEXICO 3:42:39
Sergey Makarenko, 39, RUSSIA 4:00:31
Pro Women XTERRA Time
Renata Bucher, 29, SWITZERLAND 2:49:00
Jamie Whitmore, 30, CALIFORNIA 2:56:02
Fabiola Corona, 26, MEXICO 3:20:36
Note: This list does not include the dozens of athletes from Saipan and Guam taking part in both events. Mieko Motoyoshi from Saipan was the top female amateur in XTERRA, turning in a 3:55:39.
XTERRA NEW ZEALAND: Golden Boy Hamish Carter is the clear-cut favorite to three-peat at the XTERRA New Zealand Championship on Saturday. Canada’s Brent McMahon, and Japan’s Yu Yumoto – fresh off a second-place finish at XTERRA Saipan, will lead the chase pack. In the women’s field two-time champion Sonia Foote has returned to defend her title.
The Rotorua course has been heralded as the best course in the world. The 1-kilometer swim starts on the main beach of the Blue Lake. Out on the 30-kilometer mountain bike portion there is a mix of climbing, descents, single track and logging roads set in New Zealand's best mountain bike terrain. The course has been specially designed by mountain bike legend Jon Hume. The 11k trail run traverses Blue Lake single track foreshore trail - a mixture of flat, small rolling hills and stairs.
For more on XTERRA NZ visit www.xterranz.com.
XTERRA UK WEB-READY: The recently announced XTERRA UK Championship to be held September 3rd in The Vale of Neath, South Wales, has launched its website. Find out more about the event, the area, and accompanying activities at www.xterra.co.uk.
XTERRA TV: The one-hour Nissan Xterra USA Championship show continues its run in national syndication with the airings in these markets this weekend:
City - Date, Time, Station (Affiliation)
April 8 - Tampa, FL, WTSP, 1:00pm
April 9 - Grand Rapids, MI, WOTV, 5:00pm
April 9 - Tulsa, OK, KOKI, 11:30am
April 9 - Idaho Falls, ID, KIFI, 2:30pm