A pair of Wanaka-based Kiwis – Braden Currie and Nicky Samuels - took the top spots at the 2014 XTERRA Asia-Pacific Tour season-opener at XTERRA Motatapu in the South Island of New Zealand last weekend.
Samuels, the reigning XTERRA World Champion, led the women’s race from start-to-finish and broke the course record she set last year posting a winning time of 4:17:10 (Note: This race is longer than your typical XTERRA, combining a 2km swim in Glendhu Bay at Lake Wanaka with a 47km Mountain Bike and 15km trail run over the historic Miners Trail course).
The “Swiss Miss” Renata Bucher placed 2nd and Lizzie Orchard finished 3rd. The win is Samuels’ third XTERRA win in as many attempts.
For Currie, who lives just 15 minutes from the race start, the victory marked his third XTERRA Motatapu crown in a row. His first-ever
“We had amazing weather, perfect race conditions,” said Currie, an adventure racer by trade who got his XTERRA career started in Motatapu back in 2012.
Currie led the men’s race from start to finish (although Samuels beat him out of the water), with Olly Shaw taking 2nd and Axel Reiser finishing third (top amateur).