XTERRA Chile, the second of ten events on the 2019 XTERRA Pan American Tour, takes place Sunday in San Bernardo.
In the men’s elite race expect another exciting head-to-head matchup between the reigning XTERRA World Champ Rom Akerson from Costa Rica and the reigning XTERRA Pan American Tour Champ Kieran McPherson from New Zealand.
"What an amazing course here in Chile," said Akerson. "I've had a blast here this week. The weather is great, the bike course is hard, but fun and challenging. I think I'm all rested up from last week and feeling good so looking forward to Sunday."
Last week Akerson edged McPherson by 44-seconds to win the XTERRA Argentina title. Each of the top five elite men from that race, Akerson, McPherson, Filipe Moletta (BRA), Alex Roberts (NZL), and Alejandro Bulacio (ARG) are in Chile for Sunday’s race.
The main event features a 1500-meter swim in the lagoon “Lago Maipo” followed by a 30km mountain bike segment, and 10km trail run. The trails are primarily hard, packed earth and rocks, due to the arid environment, and the mountain bike course includes several technical sections, including an 1800-meter climb out of a dry riverbed followed by a quick drop.
The women’s elite race features a showdown between Chilean triathlon standout Valentina Carvallo, last year’s XTERRA Uruguay Champ Cariito Nieva of Argentina, Laura Mira from Brazil – who was second in Argentina last week - and another local Chilean star Javiera Gainza.
Carvallo, who gave birth to her second child just two months ago, is looking forward to hitting the dirt and testing herself against some fierce competitors. Mira was second last week at XTERRA Argentina and second last year at XTERRA Brazil. Nieva was last year's XTERRA Uruguay champ, and Gainza is a successful 70.3 triathlete who is transitioning to the roads.
"This year, my 100 percent focus is on XTERRA," said Carvallo, who will race at XTERRA Brazil and also do another race in the US on the XTERRA Pan Am Tour. "I'm not the most skilled mountain biker yet but I plan to be. I am looking forward to racing against Lara, Carolina, and Javiera. My expectations are to have a good race, be competitive, and finish strong."
The main event is part of a three-day race festival, which includes open water swims, kids’ competitions, trail races, plus mountain bike races.
Learn more about the XTERRA Pan America Tour at https://www.xterraplanet.com/race/tour/pan-am.