"Lorne really is the ultimate place for an active ‘race-cation’ and the place just encourages you to get out there and experience the stunning surrounding environment."
XTERRA Global, LLC, owners and producers of the XTERRA World Tour, has entered into a strategic partnership with Torquay based Rapid Ascent Pty Ltd to host the XTERRA Australia off-road triathlon and accompanying sports festival in Lorne, Victoria on Australia’s iconic Great Ocean Road.
The inaugural event is scheduled for March 13-14, 2021, and will include an XTERRA championship distance event, a half distance off-road triathlon, trail runs, a kids event, camps, clinics, and social gatherings.
“We’ve got something for the whole family to enjoy over the two-day festival and we’ve picked the perfect weekend with the famous Aireys Inlet Open Mic Festival happening 20 minutes up the road from Lorne,” said J-D Cousens, Asia-Pacific Marketing Manager. “Families and friends can really pack it all in and enjoy a weekend filled with beautiful trails and homegrown tunes.”
As the newest Gold Level event on XTERRA’s Asia-Pacific Tour that includes championship races in New Zealand, Australia, Taiwan, Tahiti, China and Japan–XTERRA Australia will offer US $25,000 in prize money to the sport’s top professional athletes, 51 World Championship qualifying slots and inclusion in the 2021 season of the XTERRA Adventures television series produced for international distribution.
The Australian-based operating team of Rapid Ascent–producers of multiple world class off-road events in the region–will serve as the local liaison for the event.
“Lorne is located just two hours from Melbourne on the famous Great Ocean Road and Rapid Ascent has a long and strong track record of hosting high-quality events in the region, including a four-discipline multisport race that attracts upwards of 1,500 participants annually,” said Renata Bucher, XTERRA Asia-Pacific Technical Director. “John and Sam from Rapid Ascent are well known within the off-road event industry and currently host a number of major events across adventure racing, multisport, mountain biking and trail running disciplines—they’re perfect partners for XTERRA.”
Janet Clark, the president of the XTERRA World Tour and an Aussie by birth, said, “We are absolutely delighted to partner with Rapid Ascent to bring a new exciting XTERRA World Tour event to Australia and the Lorne region of Victoria. Our athletes will be treated to a stunning, ocean-front setting and perhaps more importantly, a truly amazing adventure destination to explore and discover before and after the big event.”
“The event center and transition area is set on soft green grass just 20 meters from the golden sandy beach,” said Sam Maffett, the General Manager of Rapid Ascent. “Behind that lies the main streets brimming with cafes, restaurants, shops and accommodation, most with views over the ocean. Lorne really is the ultimate place for an active ‘race-cation’ and the place just encourages you to get out there and experience the stunning surrounding environment.”
The main event will combine a 1.5km ocean swim with roughly 30-kilometers of mountain biking followed by 10km of trail running. The best athletes from across the region will be invited to compete for the XTERRA Australia crown and local athletes will be welcome to join in the fun and embrace the XTERRA motto to “Live More.”
John Jacoby, Rapid Ascent Race Director and 4x World Marathon Kayak Champion, helped design the courses. “Lorne is a small holiday town nestled in a beautiful protected bay with easy access to local running and mountain biking trails,” said Jacoby. “The Otway Ranges rise up behind the township to provide some stunning and challenging terrain to both mountain bikers and trail runners. The trail running is some of the best running you will find anywhere. Tree fern lined tracks, towering eucalypt forests, waterfalls and coastal rock formations are all features of the trail run courses.”
Renata Bucher, who won a staggering 35 XTERRA championship races and four XTERRA European Tour titles in her illustrious 15-year career, had this to say about the courses:
“The swim is in the stunning Louttit Bay, with the famous Lorne Pier as the backdrop. While the mountain bike course is not very technical, it will definitely challenge athletes and we invite all first timers and road specialists to give the off-road a crack, it’s the perfect opportunity. You’ll be met with solid climbs, fast downhills and a nice sandy surprise at the end of the bike that will test even the most focused riders,” said Bucher. “And the run course is an absolute highlight, filled with a multitude of diverse landscapes, as well as all the unique flora & fauna the region has to offer.”
Registration for XTERRA Australia will tentatively open in May, 2020. For more information on the XTERRA brand and worldwide event series, visit www.xterraplanet.com. Athlete inquiries may be directed to info [at] xterraplanet.com.
About Rapid Ascent
Regarded as Australia’s leading adventure sports event management company, Rapid Ascent organises off-road, adventure and niche sports events across Australia ranging from mass participation adventure races (the world’s largest!) to boutique mountain bike festivals and unique trail running events. Rapid Ascent conceive and host their own events and also offer other organisations and brands custom event management services. Learn more at https://www.rapidascent.com.au/
XTERRA® is a global lifestyle brand and off-road race series. What started in 1996 as the world’s first off-road triathlon in Maui, Hawaii, is now an endurance sports lifestyle with a racing presence in over 30 countries worldwide and expanding. XTERRA® cultivates a passionate and dedicated community, celebrated by intrepid triathletes, trail runners and outdoor adventurists around the globe. Learn more at www.xterraplanet.com