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Australia added to the 2008 XTERRA Global Tour
THIS WEEK: Australia has been added to the 2008 XTERRA Global Tour, XTERRA clips find their way to You Tube, Will Kelsay’s tour continued with a victory in Montana, and previews to races in New Castle, Indiana and Sundance, Utah.
7/28 – XTERRA DINO New Castle (New Castle, IN)
7/28 – XTERRA Sundance Trail Run (Salt Lake City, UT)
7/29 – XTERRA Sky High (Grafton, NY)
7/29 – XTERRA First Coast (Jacksonville, FL)
7/29 – Crested Butte Bank XTERRA (Crested Butte, CO)
8/5 – XTERRA Appalachia (Indiana, PA)
8/5 – XTERRA Panther Creek (Morristown, TN)
8/5 – XTERRA Camp Eagle (Rocksprings, TX)
8/5 – XTERRA Snow Valley (Running Springs, CA)
8/5 – XTERRA XTREME Trail Run (Chicago, IL)
8/18 – XTERRA MOUNTAIN CHAMPIONSHIP (Ogden/Snowbasin, UT)
XTERRA AUSTRALIA ‘08: The XTERRA Global Tour is headed to the land down under!
“I’m so happy I’m going to eat Vegemite for a Year,” smiled TEAM Unlimited President (and Aussie native) Janet Clark. “Australia is one of the national hotbeds for triathlon and it was important for us to have a presence there where triathlon is a major sport.”
David Hansen – the race organizer of the Sydney Olympic Games Triathlon in 2000 (the first time triathlon was contested at the Olympic Games) and his team at SuperSprint were awarded the license to produce next year’s race.
“We’re excited to be a part of the XTERRA Global Tour, the world's most popular Adventure Series," said Hansen from his home office in Melbourne. “We pride ourselves on providing competitors with the challenge of a number of world class, exciting and unique courses and an event such as XTERRA gives us a chance to showcase Australia as one of the best locations for the sport. Racers can expect a truly unique experience from the Australian XTERRA leg, including the warmth and sun that comes from beautiful northeastern Australia, a spectacular course with crystal clear waters, lush green forests and technical mountain biking for the adventurous rider.”
SuperSprint is nationally recognized as one of Australia’s leading event management companies. Some major events SuperSprint has organized include eight ITU Triathlon World Cup events, five UCI Women’s Road Cycling World Cup events, eight Australian Triathlon Championships, the popular BP Ultimate/BRW Corporate Triathlon National Series, the Gatorade Triathlon Series, the Sydney Tower Run Up, the Great Ocean & Otway Classic Ride and the Sussan Women’s Fun Run.
“It’s wonderful to have strong and experienced operators like SuperSprint,” said Clark. “It elevates the profile of the entire Global Tour.”
The date is set for April 19, a week after XTERRA New Zealand, but a site has yet to be determined. Hansen said SuperSprint currently has a list of 20 potential sites in Northern NSW and Queensland that they are working on narrowing to a shortlist of three.
“The pairing of XTERRA New Zealand and XTERRA Australia on back-to-back weekends in April is very attractive for athletes from all over the world. It’s early Fall in Australia with great racing weather and provides a perfect early season training and racing opportunity.”
The 2008 XTERRA Australia Championship will offer up a professional prize purse and award qualifying spots to the XTERRA World Championship.
Details on the location will be released as soon as possible. For more information on SuperSprint visit http://supersprint.com.au/.
XTERRA ON YOUTUBE: The XTERRA TV department has loaded a handful of short clips on You Tube for the world to see, including video from the first three regional events, this year’s Nevada Passage, and a tease for the upcoming XTERRA Mountain Championship in Utah. To check them out visit http://youtube.com/profile?user=XTERRAPlanet.
You can also download several different podcasts on XTERRA’s website at:
XTERRA WILD HORSE CREEK REVIEW: By Circ Toepel…Montana conjures up images of buffalo and cowboys. We saw neither at Hyalite Canyon just south of Bozeman. We did see a killer bike course; a kick-ass run course and the most exciting women’s finish anywhere! A longer than usual 1300m swim in the 66 degree reservoir preceded a bike ride that had a little of everything. At 6800’ riders made their way around the lake on single track that wound through the trees, rolling up and down on lots of roots, some rocks and good old dirt. On the other side of the lake the trail opened up into a spectacular meadow with perfectly placed, triangular peaks in the background. It was so stunning it left many riders wanting this section to go on forever. Nothing is perfect though and a left turn onto a gravel road brought the bikes around the lake to the start of a 2 loop climb with a technical loose rocky descent. Back in transition the fun was about to begin again with a run course that eventual winner Will Kelsay described as perfect preparation for the upcoming Championship races.
Scott and Karen Muir being swimmers at heart gave the 1st person out of the water a $100 prime. Trever Gray from Sandpoint, Idaho emerged from the water several minutes ahead of his neighbor Jeff Smith but had stomach problems on the bike and couldn’t finish. Brandyn Roarke-Gray was 4th overall out of the water and only 40 seconds behind Jeff.
Kelsay made up the 3 minutes he lost to Jeff in the swim during the bike and the pair came into T2 very close together. That was the last Jeff would see of him as Will put the hammer down and passed him shortly into the first of 2 laps. After the race Jeff said, “that guy can run!” Will’s finish time of 2:19:50 awarded him half of the extremely generous $500 1st place prize money. Jeff’s time of 2:21:23 gave him the top amateur spot in addition to the $100 swim prime. 2nd place went to Ross McMahan from Incline Village with a time of 2:26:56 and 3rd place to Douglas Cook from Jackson, Wyoming another 4 minutes back at 2:30:04. Everyone agreed this was one of the most difficult, challenging run courses anywhere. Ross described it as brutal, but real XTERRA.
Close does not even begin to describe the women’s race. Six minutes after Brandyn cruised out of T1 with her 20:44 swim split, Lisa Lieb and Heather Lien proceeded to give spectators the most incredible race I have ever seen. In addition to looking almost like twins and having last names separated by only 1 letter, they were mere seconds apart from start to finish. They ran virtually side-by=side during the entire run. Those fortunate enough to witness the finish saw Lisa light the turbo and make a final pass at the top of the steep, rocky descent that preceded a 75’ sprint to win by 1 second! Spectacular, to say the least. Afterwards it was inspiring to watch these 2 close competitors hug and congratulate each other on a great race. Brandyn held off the same stomach problems her husband was experiencing and finished in 3rd place taking advantage of the 50yd optional swim finish which cut off about 200 yards of the run. Post-race Lisa said she had a little trouble in the swim with after her goggles were kicked off but settled into her rhythm on the bike on a course that had just about everything you would want in an XTERRA.
Scott Muir, being a master chef, changed hats, jumped behind the grill and fired up some tasty burgers and homemade chili before the awards were presented. Tons of free schwag was given away and I doubt if anyone went away empty handed. This course will only get better as the race directors are working on a single track alternative to the gravel road. We had the opportunity to ride some other trails before the race and this undiscovered area has so much to offer, it will be exciting to see what they come up with.
On a personal level this race meant a lot to my wife Cindi and me. Our 21-year-old nephew Ben Richards lived in Bozeman up until this past spring. He was killed in an avalanche on Yellow Tail Mountain just outside of Big Sky. Cindi felt his spirit with every pedal stroke and every step as she carried his picture on the bike and the run. We dedicated this race to him.
XTERRA DINO NEW CASTLE: This second annual event takes place on one of central Indiana’s best mountain bike trails. Located less than an hour east of Indianapolis, Westwood Park’s large lake is encircled by the 10-mile mountain bike trail. After the triangular swim course, riders begin a counterclockwise loop on the trail. The course will keep riders working with continuous flowing turns and up and downs. Along the way, many bridges and scenic views of the lake are available (if you take the time to look!) The run course begins with horse trail and ends on the mountain bike trail. Save some strength for an uphill finish!
SUNDANCE – A TRAIL RUNNER’S HEAVEN: Trail runners of Utah will unite this Saturday at Sundance Resort for an early morning competition at the base of Mt. Timpanogos for the XTERRA Sundance 10k Trail Run. The gorgeous mountains and valleys, muse for the Sundance Film Festival, will no doubt spawn creative thinking for those who race. This almost entirely single-track trail is in a word – amazing.
This course will be almost exactly 6 miles, just a hair under 10k, yet starts and finishes at 6100 ft. above sea level – so lungs start working right when the gun shouts go. Unusual for a mountain run, the elevation gain will be over 4-miles – so it feels like a hill, but does not look the part.
XTERRA Trail Run Series Manager Dev Letendre says that the views are so incredible that “runners will have to be careful combining scoping the scenery with racing against Mother Nature”. Set in the mountains where Robert Redford goes to recharge – no doubt this course will do that for all of the athletes who compete on Saturday.
The XTERRA Sundance Trail Run is the 3rd of 4 events in the XTERRA Utah Trail Running Series with regional winners qualifying for the XTERRA National Trail Race in Lake Tahoe, NV this September.
In the last two events, a battle for the men’s regional champion has emerged between Michael Raemisch (Men 30-39) and Kevin Tuck (50-59). Raemisch won the XTERRA Bonneville Basher (6/2/07) over Tuck on the more “flat-ish” course of the shoreline trail. However, Tuck won the XTERRA Snowbird Trail Run (7/14/07) beating Raemisch on tough Dick Bass Highway hill. The XTERRA Sundance Course will feature some hills along with a bundle of twisting and turning. This course could suit both of them at different times, and with so much of it a tight single track, it may be problematic to pass, when it’s time to pass!
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