Stories from the XTERRA Tribe

Oct. 23, 2015

Stroll along the sandy shores of D.T. Fleming Beach on Sunday, November 1, 2015, and you’ll see hundreds upon hundreds of the fittest people on the planet, each with their own unique number tattooed on their arm.

For the pros, the number represents where they finished at last year’s race.  The reigning XTERRA World Champion Ruben Ruzafa will don No. 1; and last year’s women’s winner Flora Duffy will wear No. 61.  For the amateurs, their race number is indicative of what age division they're in.  For example, No. 103 is Heather Horton, the youngest woman in the field at 15-years-old, and No. 896 is Ron Hill, the senior statesman of XTERRA at 78.

For timing purposes, the numbers are identifiers, a way to track how fast No. 218 can swim, bike, and run.  Of course, there’s more to No. 218 than her bike split.  No. 218 is Alissa Magrum, and here is her story, in her words...

No. 218 - Alissa Magrum, 40-44, Austin, Texas

Why do I race XTERRA?  There is a laundry list of reasons that range from a sheer love of competition to an equal love for all three sports; open water swimming, mountain biking and trail running, to a desire to show my 10-year-old    daughter, Ella how strong her Mom is, to a reason that makes my motivation a little different than most XTERRA athletes...their names are Colin, Zachary, Averie, Connor, Joshua, Christian, Stewie, Ken and the list could go on and on. Each one of those names is a child or a friend who drowned. My motivation is bigger than me and more powerful than me. I race as an Athlete Ambassador to Prevent Drowning. I race to raise water safety awareness and to tell people that drowning is the NUMBER 1 CAUSE of accidental death for children under 5, yet it is preventable. I race to have conversations in the transition area and at the waters edge and on the bike and on the run. I share the stories of those who have lost their lives to a fatal drowning and those who survived a non-fatal drowning. I raise funds ($1200 so far this year) for Colin's Hope--the drowning prevention non-profit organization I run. I race to help race directors elevate the water safety standards on the swim portion of the tri. Learn more about Coin’s Hope at

I also race XTERRA because I love the people and the camaraderie and the genuine caring of the XTERRA community. I am motivated to combine my passion to make a difference in the world with my athletic talents.  I carry a positive attitude with me into every event, even when things do not go my way. I am a competitor but I am rooted in kindness and an authentic desire to share the XTERRA course with fellow competitors from around the globe--each of us speaking different languages and motivated by different reasons yet coming together to kill it on the swim, bike and run.  Being part of the XTERRA family is truly a special gift.


We were privileged to read the stories of dozens upon dozens of XTERRA Warriors and are inspired by their dedication, perspective, and strength.  We gathered 40 of those stories together and created a special PDF "Stories from the XTERRA Tribe" ... in these pages you'll read first person accounts from each of the athletes on why the race XTERRA:

Bib # - Name, Division, Hometown (Page #)
No. 218 - Alissa Magrum, 40-44, Austin, Texas (1)
No. 684 – Roy McBeth, 45-49, B.C., Canada (1)
No. 220 - Deanna McCurdy, 40-44, Littleton, CO (2)
No. 643 - Scott Bierman, 45-49, Frisco, CO (3)
No. 178 - Kristy Jennings, 35-39, Wanaka, NZL (4)
No. 390 - Thomas Kerner, 25-29, Bayer, Germany (5)
No. 139 - Gabrielle Chaizy, 30-34, Royat, France (5)
No. 328 – Tate Haugen, 15-19, Fort St. John, B.C., CAN (6)
No. 233 - Christena Ward, 40-44, Dillon, CO (6)
No. 883 – Craig Schilling, 65-69, Northbrook, IL (7)
No. 745 - Andy Deunow, 50-54, Anchorage, AK (8)
No. 188 - Allison Moore, 35-39, Boise, Idaho (8)
No. 484 - Marcus Dudoit, 35-39, Lafayette, LA (9)
No. 174 - Sara Gorges, 35-39, Heidelberg/Germany (9)
No. 437 - Tom Morwood, 30-34, Sydney, Australia (10)
No. 697 – Douglas Piil, 45-49, San Clemente, CA (10)
No. 316 - Libby Harrow, 65-69, Fruita, CO (11)
No. 124 – Maria Espinosa, 25-29, Morelia, Mexico (12)
No. 546 – Anton Bergs, 40-44, Atiamuri, New Zealand (12)
No. 201 - Alexandra Borrelly-Lebrun, 40-44, France (12)
No. 617 - Fred Schuth, 40-44, Littleton, CO (13)
No. 514 - Philip Myers, 35-39, Paia, Maui (13)
No. 544 - Doug Barkema, 40-44, Littleton, CO (14)
No. 360 – Charles Pietzman, 20-24, Troy, Missouri (14)
No. 277 - Martha Hanright, 50-54, Templeton, MA (14)
No. 232 - Erin VanTuyl, 40-44, Westminster, MA (14)
No. 601 – Samuel Peroni, 40-44, Brisighella, Italy (15)
No. 68 – Carina Wasle, PRO, Kundl, Austria (15)
No. 836 – Tom Monica, 55-59, Thousand Oaks, CA (16)
No. 123 - Christy Drever, 25-29, Hardisty, Alberta, CAN (16)
No. 891 – GL Brown, 70-74, Ada, MI (17)
No. 284 - Anne-Mette Mortensen, 50-54, Denmark (17)
No. 577 - Dale Hemley, 40-44, Torquay, Australia (17)
No. 235 - Beata Wronska, 40-44, Boynton Beach, FL (18)
No. 795 - Mark Waaijenberg, 50-54, Netherlands (19)
No. 872 - Doug Usher, 60-64, Upton, MA (19)
No. 317 - Linda Usher, 65-69, Upton, MA (20)
No. 517 - Paralisi Lefteris, 35-39, Athens, Greece (20)
No. 602 – Francis Perry, 40-44, Vosges, France (21)
No. 422 - Christos Geitonas, 30-34, Athens, Greece (22)
No. 743 - Dave DeSantis, 50-54, Milton, MA (23)
No. 224 - Nadja Mueller Schmid, 40-44, Switzerland (23)