Josiah Middaugh and Flora Duffy captured the 7th annual XTERRA Mountain Championship off-road triathlon pro race titles on a picture perfect day at Beaver Creek Resort in the Rocky Mountains around Avon, Colorado on Saturday
July 18, 2015 (Beaver Creek Resort/Avon, CO) – Josiah Middaugh and Flora Duffy captured the 7th annual XTERRA Mountain Championship off-road triathlon pro race titles on a picture perfect day at Beaver Creek Resort in the Rocky Mountains around Avon, Colorado on Saturday.
It’s Middaugh’s third straight win on his home course and fourth in five years. It’s also his second win in a row on the XTERRA U.S. Pro Series and puts him in prime position to capture his third straight Series title in Utah this September. Of note, Middaugh won his first-ever XTERRA major at the Mountain Championship when it was held in Keystone, Colorado in 2004. This is his 16th career XTERRA title.
The 36-year-old from Eagle-Vail, Colorado is living proof that you can’t win the race in the swim. He exited the 68-degree water of Nottingham Lake about 2:30 back of rookie Eli Hemming and the established XTERRA core of racers Branden Rakita, Brad Zoller, Braden Currie, and Ben Hoffman.
At mile 3.5 Currie had nine seconds on Hoffman, more than a minute on Rakita and Rom Akerson, and Middaugh was 1:35 back. By T2 after several thousand feet of climbing up the mountain Middaugh had a 40-second lead on Currie and one-minute on Hoffman. Two miles into the run that lead had stretched to two minutes and he crossed the line in 2:07:26, followed by Hoffman in 2:09:10 and Currie in 2:10:50.
Josiah had this to say about his march up the mountain.
“Ben and Braden had a pretty big lead out of the water and they kept that lead all the way up the first climb.
I reeled them in at about mile ten on the bike so I had a lot of work to do to get to them. I tried to put a little bit of a cushion on them coming into the run. Luckily I had 40-50 seconds coming into the run.
Last year I had a really good race here. Today really felt like a struggle.”
It’s Hoffman’s second straight runner-up here, and he was third in each of the previous two tries. With his third-place showing today Currie moves into 2nd place in the XTERRA U.S. Pro Series standings and could take the Series with a win at the USA Championship combined with a third-place or lower finish by Middaugh in Utah.
XTERRA Costa Rica Champion Rom Akerson finished in fourth and Alex Modestou placed fifth for the second straight season.
|1||Josiah Middaugh||36||Eagle-Vail, Colorado||2:07:26||100|
|2||Ben Hoffman||31||Boulder, Colorado||2:09:10||90|
|3||Braden Currie||29||Wanaka, New Zealand||2:10:50||82|
|4||Rom Akerson||30||Tambor, Costa Rica||2:15:19||75|
|5||Alex Modestou||28||Durham, North Carolina||2:15:32||69|
|6||Ryan Ignatz||36||Boulder, Colorado||2:17:04||63|
|7||Chris Legh||42||Lyons, Colorado (AUS)||2:19:55||58|
|8||Brad Zoller||37||Avon, Colorado||2:20:17||53|
|9||Chris Ganter||36||Boise, Idaho||2:22:36||49|
|10||Thomas Spannring||39||Longmont, Colorado||2:23:14||45|
|Also: Chris Foster (41), Eli Hemming (37), James Hadley (34), Branden Rakita (31), Ben Torvik (28), Jimmy Archer (NP)|
In the women’s race the reigning XTERRA World Champion Flora Duffy’s reign of dominance continued.
A week after finishing third at the PanAm Games road triathlon in Toronto, Duffy proved she’s just as strong on a mountain bike and trails. The 27-year-old from Devonshire, Bermuda had the fastest swim, bike, and run to take the tape in 2:22:41, more than six-minutes ahead of runner-up Emma Garrard.
The victory marks her 11th XTERRA win in her last 12 tries since the start of the 2014 season.
After catching her breath at the finish Flora had this to say about her race, “I made sure I didn’t go out too hard. Swam within myself. I came out onto the bike feeling pretty good. Much better than I thought. Again tried to ride within myself. I had a power-meter on my bike so I knew what watts I wanted to ride. Stuck to those. Tried to keep it smooth through any technical bits then onto the run… the run hurt… a lot. Unbelievable actually. I was just survival mode out there. Went out hard to the top of the hill then worked on good turnover on the descents.
Focused on my own race and raced within myself and that’s all you really can do.”
Behind Duffy, Emma Garrard was having a great day of her own. She posted the third-best swim, got ahead of Sara McLarty early on the bike and had the second-fastest ride and run times to finish in 2:28:43, nearly six-minutes ahead of Schuler.
It’s Garrard’s fifth straight runner-up finish this year and she’s now placed 2nd at all eight regional championship races over the past two seasons. Sara Schuler ran her way into third, Jaime Brede had a career-best day to finish fourth, and last month’s XTERRA East Champion Suzie Snyder finished fifth
In a pre-race preview piece Garrard had predicted the podium quite nicely, saying “If there’s one athlete who suits this course it is mountain goat momma Sara as she has the podiums here to prove it. If there’s local gal for this race it’s Jaime Brede who I’m sure knows the course better than the rest of us and had a breakthrough race here last year with a 5th place. Based on her 3rd place at the Go Pro Mtn Games and ample preparation at altitude she can certainly improve this year. Suzie living closer to the mountains will surely make her faster this year, plus coming off a win in Richmond. Then of course there’s Flora Duffy, who will be about a mile ahead with Sara McLarty before the rest of us even touch our bikes. Flora proved last year and early season this year she can dominate on any XTERRA course in any condition. She is back in action after injury placing 3rd in last weekend’s Pan Am games doing most of the work at the front of the bike with a race best swim and solid run to match…”
|1||Flora Duffy||27||Devonshire, Bermuda||2:22:41||100|
|2||Emma Garrard||33||Park City, Utah||2:28:43||90|
|3||Sara Schuler||34||Boulder, Colorado||2:34:36||82|
|4||Jaime Brede||38||Breckenridge, Colorado||2:36:56||75|
|5||Suzie Snyder||33||Reno, Nevada||2:38:01||69|
|6||Tamara Donelson||39||Edwards, Colorado||2:42:21||63|
|7||Maia Ignatz||34||Boulder, Colorado||2:45:47||58|
|8||Sara McLarty||32||Clermont, Florida||2:55:51||53|
|9||Debby Sullivan||33||Rocklin, California||2:56:09||49|
|10||Caroline Colonna||52||Taos, New Mexico||3:04:32||45|
|Also: Rebecca Blatt (41)|
MIDDAUGH, GARRARD LEAD XTERRA U.S. PRO SERIES
The men’s and women’s XTERRA U.S. Pro Series title chase will come down to the final race at the USA Championship in Ogden, Utah on September 19th. Both current leaders – Josiah Middaugh and Emma Garrard – control their own fate and can secure the crowns with a win at Nationals (or by simply finishing in front of Currie and Snyder, respectively). For Currie, a win combined with a 3rd or worse from Middaugh would score him the Series win. For Snyder, a win in Utah would be enough to overcome Garrard, and their are several other possibilities based on outcome that become fairly complicated.
|XTERRA U.S. Pro Series Standings (After 4)|
|Pros count 3-of-4 regionals, plus Nationals|
|1||Josiah Middaugh, USA||x90||90||100||100||290|
|2||Braden Currie, NZL||DNS||100||90||82||272|
|3||Chris Ganter, USA||82||82||75||x49||239|
|4||Branden Rakita, USA||69||63||69||x31||201|
|5||Ryan Ignatz, USA||x45||53||82||63||198|
|6||Alex Modestou, USA||x49||58||63||69||190|
|7||Craig Evans, USA||58||75||49||DNS||182|
|8||Brad Zoller, USA||53||x49||53||53||159|
|9||Karsten Madsen, CAN||63||DNF||58||DNS||121|
|10||Francisco Serrano, MEX||100||DNS||DNS||DNS||100|
|11||Ben Hoffman, USA||DNS||DNS||DNS||90||90|
|12||Chris Foster, USA||DNS||45||DNS||41||86|
|13||Ben Allen, AUS||75||DNS||DNS||DNS||75|
|14||Rom Akerson, CRC||DNS||DNS||DNS||75||75|
|15||James Hadley, GBR||37||DNS||DNS||34||71|
|16||Olly Shaw, NZL||DNS||69||DNF||DNS||69|
|17||Chris Legh, AUS||DNS||DNS||DNS||58||58|
|18||Ben Collins, USA||DNS||DNS||45||DNS||45|
|19||Thomas Spannring, USA||DNS||DNS||DNS||45||45|
|20||JP Donovan, USA||41||DNS||DNS||DNS||41|
|21||Will Ross, USA||DNS||41||DNS||DNS||41|
|22||Ian King, USA||DNS||DNS||41||DNS||41|
|23||Eli Hemming, USA||DNS||DNS||DNS||37||37|
|24||Jimmy Archer, USA||34||DNS||DNS||DNP||34|
|25||Kyle Hughes, USA||31||DNS||DNS||DNS||31|
|26||Ben Torvik, USA||DNS||DNS||DNS||28||28|
|1||Emma Garrard, USA||x90||90||90||90||270|
|2||Suzie Snyder, USA||82||82||100||x69||264|
|3||Lesley Paterson, GBR||100||100||DNS||DNS||200|
|4||Sara Schuler, USA||58||58||DNS||82||198|
|5||Maia Ignatz, USA||x49||63||75||58||196|
|6||Kara LaPoint, USA||63||53||69||DNS||185|
|7||Catherine Sterling, USA||DNS||75||82||DNS||157|
|8||Debby Sullivan, USA||45||x31||58||49||152|
|9||Rebecca Blatt, USA||31||34||45||41||151|
|10||Sara McLarty, USA||x41||45||49||53||147|
|11||Brittany Webster, CAN||69||DNS||63||DNS||132|
|12||Jaime Brede, USA||DNS||49||DNS||75||124|
|13||Flora Duffy, BER||DNS||DNS||DNS||100||100|
|14||Emily Bashton, USA||DNF||37||53||DNS||90|
|15||Caroline Colonna, USA||37||DNS||DNS||45||82|
|16||Melanie McQuaid, CAN||75||DNS||DNS||DNS||75|
|17||Christine Jeffrey, CAN||DNS||69||DNF||DNS||69|
|18||Tamara Donelson, AUS||DNS||DNS||DNS||63||63|
|19||Katie Button, CAN||53||DNF||DNS||DNS||53|
|20||Amelia McCracken, USA||DNS||41||DNS||DNS||41|
|21||Lauren Thompson, USA||34||DNS||DNS||DNS||34|
MERRICK, BAKER TAKE AMATEUR TITLES
Joshua Merrick from Alamosa, Colorado finished eleventh overall and roughly two minutes faster than Bryce Phinney of Broomfield, Colorado to capture the men’s amateur title today.
Sonora, California’s Julie Baker was the sixth overall woman and top women’s amateur. Finishing three minutes faster than former XTERRA Amateur World Champ Elizabeth Gruber from Colorado Springs, CO.
XTERRA MTN CHAMPIONS (FEMALE AGE GROUP)
|25 – 29||Elizabeth Gruber||2:44:59||Colorado Springs, CO|
|30 – 34||Whitney Barrett||2:52:04||Golden, CO|
|35 – 39||Julie Baker||2:41:23||Sonora, CA|
|40 – 44||Christena Ward||2:58:58||Dillon, CO|
|45 – 49||Lori Cooper||3:16:57||Trophy Club, TX|
|50 – 54||Paula Maresh||3:13:06||Littleton, CO|
|55 – 59||Sharon McDowell-Larsen||2:56:04||Colorado Springs, CO|
|60 – 64||Cindi Toepel||3:28:40||Littleton, CO|
|65 – 69||Libby Harrow||4:58:12||Fruita, CO|
XTERRA MTN CHAMPIONS (MALE AGE GROUP)
|15 – 19||Nelson Hegg||2:33:27||Boulder, CO|
|20-24||Jeff Sabatka||2:25:57||Gunnison, CO|
|25 – 29||Kris Ochs||2:31:46||Vail, CO|
|30 – 34||Joshua Merrick||2:23:16||Alamosa, CO|
|35 – 39||Bryce Phinney||2:25:23||Broomfield, CO|
|40 – 44||Ryan McMullen||2:39:13||Colorado Springs, CO|
|45 – 49||Stephen White||2:32:35||Avon, CO|
|50 – 54||Dennis Farrell||2:38:35||Morrison, CO|
|55 – 59||Cliff Millemann||2:59:28||Davis, CA|
|60 – 64||Peter Dann||2:50:07||Eagle, CO|
|65-69||David Rakita||3:23:01||Durango, CO|
|70-74||G L Brown||5:28:51||Ada, MI|
|Clydesdale||Robin Krejci||4:24:22||Columbus, OH|
* Top Amateur
Next up: The XTERRA USA Championship at Snowbasin Resort near Ogden, Utah on September 19.
2015 XTERRA WORLD CHAMPIONSHIP QUALIFIERS
The XTERRA Mountain Championship was the 26th of 40 events where the fastest amateur athletes from around the world can qualify to race at the 20th annual XTERRA World Championship at Kapalua, Maui on Nov. 1, 2015.
The XTERRA Mountain Championship was presented by Paul Mitchell and XTERRA Travel, and sponsored by Beaver Creek Resort, Muscle Milk, Gatorade Endurance, PowerBar, XTERRA Optic Nerve, LifeProof, Greenlayer, XTERRA Coffee, the town of Avon, XTERRA Wetsuits, XTERRA Fitness, Utah Sports Commission, Salming, XTERRA Boards, and Outrigger Resorts.
About TEAM Unlimited/XTERRA
TEAM Unlimited is a Hawaii-based television events and marketing company, founded in 1988. It owns and produces XTERRA and in 2015 will offer more than 300 XTERRA off-road triathlon and trail running races in 35 countries worldwide. In addition, TEAM TV has produced more than 300 adventure television shows resulting in three Emmy’s and 42 Telly Awards for production excellence since 1990. View samples at www.xterra.tv, and learn more at xterraplanet.com and xterratrailrun.com.