Flavio Vianna, 38, and Emma Weston, 27, from Christchurch, New Zealand took home top honors at the XTERRA Motatapu off-road triathlon held on the beautiful South Island on Saturday.
Vianna won the men’s race in 3:39:09, more than four-minutes ahead of Jason Thomsen, but said it wasn’t as flawless a performance as it might have seemed.
“I made mistakes the whole way,” laughed Vianna. “I got on the mountain bike and dropped to the lodge and there was no way through, so I went back and then I missed the sign for transition and came through to the finish line and had to go back.”
The scenic, but grueling race combined a 2K swim with a 47K mountain bike and 8.5K trail run.
“I think it hurt everyone, not just me,” said Vianna. “It was about who could tolerate more pain. I didn’t know I was in front until the finish. This is amazing, I have to say thanks to my friend Dougal (former winner Dougal Allan) for not turning up, otherwise I would be second!”
In the women’s race, Weston’s winning time was 4:41:28, nearly five minutes faster than Georgina Read. Weston surprised herself with the victory and said she couldn’t believe it when she saw the finish tape in front of her.
“This was my first triathlon ever,” she exclaimed. “The swim, which I am not used to, was not as enjoyable as the rest of the day. I just found a little space and ground my way through it. But all the competitors are great, friendly, and chatty – well at least I was, so I suppose they had to chat back! Running up the hill and looking at the views from the top was just amazing.”
The top finishers in each age group earned a spot on the start line of the 24th annual XTERRA World Championship to be held October 27, 2019 in Kapalua, Maui.
For full results CLICK HERE