Two-time XTERRA World Champion Lesley Paterson is the latest in a string of off-road greats to join the start list for the XTERRA European Championship race next Sunday, August 30, at Vachery Estate in Cranleigh, England.
“Pretty excited to race at the XTERRA European Championships,” said Paterson, who is undefeated with wins at XTERRA Costa Rica, the XTERRA West Championship and the XTERRA Southeast Championship that doubled as the USA Triathlon Off-Road National Championship race this year.
The “Scottish Rocket” is on a mission to make GBR’s Olympic team for mountain biking and in a stroke of good fortune will be in Europe competing in a world cup event the weekend before.
“I’ve got a MTB World Cup in Italy the week before so I figured, hey, dust off the XTERRA Wetsuits, find a pair of running On shoes, and hop on a short flight to give the legendary Conrad Stoltz the proper send-off he deserves — his final XTERRA as a pro! I’ve never done an XTERRA in the UK! It’s gonna be weird but super fun!”
Super fun, and super challenging. The women’s field is stacked with the likes of 3x XTERRA European Tour Champion Helena Erbenova who has won four straight races and last year’s XTERRA European Tour Champ Kathrin Mueller who won both races she did in Europe this year at XTERRA Portugal and France.
Those three women have combined to win the last three ITU Cross Tri World Championships (Mueller won last year, Erbenova in 2013, and Paterson took the title in 2012).
Other notables include four-time XTERRA European Tour Champion Renata Bucher, who upset both Erbenova and Mueller to win the ETU Cross Tri European Championship in July and 2013 XTERRA England Champion Jacqui Slack who is excited to race on her home turf.
The men’s race is even more fun to think about with the legendary Conrad “the Caveman” Stoltz from South Africa laying it all on the line one last time (or so he’s saying). He’s the most decorated off-road athlete of all time boasting an unprecedented 51 career majors, four XTERRA World Titles and three ITU Cross Triathlon World Championships in his 15-year off-road career.
His final showdown matches him up against the undisputed fastest man on dirt right now, Ruben Ruzafa from Spain. Ruzafa, a three-time XTERRA World Champion, has won 14 straight majors since 2013 including the last two XTERRA World titles and last year’s ITU World Championship.
Then there’s Ben Allen from Australia, who placed third at the XTERRA World Championship in each of the last two years, and is hot off back-to-back wins at XTERRA Czech and Germany.
Download a PDF of the XTERRA European Championship press guide to read full profiles on the elite’s racing, view current Euro Tour rankings, past history, results, and more. Click here.
XTERRA European Championship Elite Start List, as of 8.20.15
Rank, Name, Age, Hometown
3, Ruben Ruzafa, 31, Málaga, Spain
4, Jan Pyott, 34, Oberägeri, Switzerland
5, Albert Soley, 28, Catalunya, Spain
8, Henry Sleight, 26, Oxfordshire, United Kingdom
9, Tomas Kubek, 24, Bratislava, Slovak Republic
10, Ben Allen, 31, New South Wales, Australia
12, Nicolas Fernandez, 31, Pelissanne, France
28, Jim Thijs, 35, Huldenberg, Belgium
38, Llewellyn Holmes, 34, Somerset, United Kingdom
66, Matt Dewis, 23, Loughborough, United Kingdom
NR, Euan Adams, 29, East Sussex, United Kingdom
NR, Jimmy Archer, 43, Colorado, United States
NR, JP Donovan, 28, Nevada, United States
NR, Pete Dyson, 26, London, United Kingdom
NR, Chris Ganter, 37, Idaho, United States
NR, Doug Hall, 27, Bath, United Kingdom
NR, Jon Heasman, 40, Surrey, United Kingdom
NR, Richard Stannard, 41, Surrey, United Kingdom
NR, Conrad Stoltz, 41, Stellenbosch, South Africa
NR, Lee Williams, 31, Mid Glamorgan, United Kingdom
NR, Noah Wright, 41, Texas, United States
Rank, Name, Age, Hometown
1, Helena Erbenová, 37, Jablonec, Czech Republic
2, Brigitta Poór, 26, Sopron, Hungary
4, Louise Fox, 35, Berkshire, United Kingdom
5, Jessie Roberts, 26, Gloucestershire, United Kingdom
7, Karin Hansen, 34, Lucerne, Switzerland
8, Kathrin Mueller, 31, Freiburg, Germany
9, Jacqui Slack, 32, Staffordshire, United Kingdom
10, Lenka Cibulkova, Czech Republic
12, Myriam Guillot-Boisset, 36, Rhone, France
13, Elisabetta Curridori, 24, Sardegna, Italy
16, Renata Bucher, 37, Lucerne, Switzerland
18, Verena Eisenbarth, 30, Arthaz, France
NR, Emily Bashton, 35, Virginia, United States
NR, Genevieve Evans, 42, California, United States
NR, Belinda Hadden, 36, Wandana Heights, VIC, Australia
NR, Christine Jeffrey, 42, Ontario, Canada
NR, Hana Kolarova, 28, Czech Republic
NR, Nienke Oostra, 38, Angus, United Kingdom
NR, Daz Parker, 47, London, United Kingdom
NR, Lesley Paterson, 34, Sterling, Scotland
NR, Alena Stevens, 33, Slovakia
NR, Jip Veelenturf, 23, South Holland, Netherlands
Rank = Rank on the XTERRA European Tour (after 10 events)
NR = Not Ranked