Just as the summer is heating up, some of the XTERRA Pan Am Tour’s coolest races are about to begin. There are seven races coast to coast this year in the Great White North, and each one provides the opportunity for amateurs to qualify for the XTERRA World Championship in Maui, this October.
On July 7, it’s XTERRA Victoria in beautiful British Columbia. The race features a two-lap, 1500-meter swim in the clear waters of Durrance Lake and a fantastic bike course in the world-class mountain bike trails in Mt. Work Park. Locally known as “The Dump,” the course follows a variety of single- and double-track with plenty of climbs and fast, flowy descents. The run course takes competitors on an amazing trail through the wilderness area of the Partridge Hills. Athletes can catch your breath on the flats but will soon be tested on narrow switchbacks, steep climbs, and rolling downhills.
A Silver race on the XTERRA Pan Am Tour, XTERRA Victoria has 26 spots for the XTERRA World Championship up for grabs for age-group winners as well as an elite purse and points for both amateurs and pros competing in the Tour.
On the other side of the country, the XTERRA Quebec series got underway at Bromont June 9, and continues with XTERRA Quebec on July 14 at Lac Delage, then XTERRA Tremblant on September 8. All three races include a 1200-meter swim, 26K bike, and 10K trail run, and the day includes sprint races, duathlons and youth triathlons as well.
Earlier in June, Edmond Roy and Carolyne Guay were the XTERRA Bromont champs and secured a spot at the XTERRA World Championship this fall. Age-group winners in XTERRA Bromont, Quebec, and Tremblant also earn qualifying spots at XTERRA Worlds, as long as they compete in at least two races in the series.
XTERRA Quebec is the big event in the series, another Silver race on the XTERRA Pan Am Tour with Maui spots and points. Held in Lac Delage, near Quebec City, in northern Quebec and close to the top of Maine, XTERRA Quebec’s eponymous trails and cool climate make this a perfect summer race. However, don’t expect it to be easy … last year’s XTERRA Quebec champ, Josiah Middaugh, said it was tough and he was also impressed with the technical nature of the mountain bike course.
“The trails were amazing,” said Middaugh, after last year’s race. “But with so many twists and turns, ups and downs, roots and rocks, it was a long, tough day.”
New this year, XTERRA Conquer the Crater will be held in Kivi Park on August 4 in Sudbury, Ontario. Ten Maui qualifying spots are on offer in this race that is a 100 percent charitable event to support the Northern Cancer Foundation’s Miles Against Cancer. Sudbury is known as “cottage country” because of its cozy lakeside houses along the 300 lakes in the region. A destination race for sure, bring the entire family to XTERRA Conquer the Crater to explore the beauty and French culture this region has in spades.
Conquer the Crater will include a 1200-meter swim, 26-30K bike, and 10K run. The day will also host a sprint triathlon, a duathlon, a trail run, and plenty of kids’ events.
On August 18, XTERRA moves west to Canmore, Alberta in the heart of the Canadian Rockies. It’s hard to imagine a more beautiful site for a race than the blue skies and show-covered peaks found at XTERRA Canmore. Last year, high school phenom Tate Haugan and Sheri Foster won the event, which includes a 1500-meter swim, 27K bike, and 10K run.
Finally, just as the weather begins to cool, XTERRA finishes its tour of Canada with XTERRA Sleeping Giant on August 24 in Thunder Bay, Ontario at Sleeping Giant Provincial Park. Again, the race will qualify ten to XTERRA Worlds in Maui, on a slightly more beginner-friendly course than XTERRA Victoria and Quebec. Last year, Joshua Malenchak and Karla Baily took home top honors.
The 1200-meter swim at Sleeping Giant is in a clear, spring-fed lake followed by a fast 24K ride through grassy mountain single-track. The 10K out-and-back run is more technical and will take you through forest canopies, across creeks, and up steep climbs for epic views of Lake Superior. Like most of the races in Canada, this is another destination event with paddle boarding, hiking, waterfalls, and incredible views for the entire family (either those related to you or the ones you choose to bring along for the ride).
Learn more at www.xterraplanet.com.
2019 XTERRA Off-Road Triathlons in Canada
|9-Jun||XTERRA Bromont||Bromont, QC|
|7-Jul||XTERRA Victoria # Silver||Victoria, BC|
|14-Jul||XTERRA Quebec # Silver||Quebec City, QC|
|18-Aug||XTERRA Canmore||Canmore, AB|
|4-Aug||XTERRA Conquer the Crater||Sudbury, ON|
|24-Aug||XTERRA Sleeping Giant||Thunder Bay, ON|
|8-Sep||XTERRA Tremblant||Tremblant, QC|