XTERRA Pan Am Tour heads to the beach in Costa Rica

April 6th, 2017

XTERRA Pan Am Tour heads to the beach in Costa Rica

The best of the best XTERRA Pan America Tour elites are shuffling through the sand at Playa Conchal on the beautiful northwest coast of Guanacaste in preparation the fourth-annual XTERRA Costa Rica Championship race on Sunday, April 9.

The best of the best XTERRA Pan America Tour elites are shuffling through the sand at Playa Conchal on the beautiful northwest coast of Guanacaste in preparation the fourth-annual XTERRA Costa Rica Championship race on Sunday, April 9.

Reigning XTERRA Pan Am Pro Series Champions Josiah Middaugh and Suzie Snyder highlight an all-star cast that includes 11 men and women ranked in the top 10 of the final tour standings last year.

“I’m feeling like a spring chicken entering my 17th season of XTERRA racing, and there are lots of chickens here in Costa Rica so I fit right in,” laughed Middaugh.  “And of course, I like challenges, so I am back here for my fourth attempt at a win after three consecutive runner-up finishes.”

The 2015 XTERRA World Champ was 2nd to Leonardo Chacon in 2014, 2nd to Rom Akerson in 2015, and 2nd to Karl Shaw last year but none of the three will be racing on Sunday.

“I’ve had a good off-season and I feel a little more sharp than I did this time last year, but you never know for sure until you race,” he said.  “I made the trip with my lovely wife Ingrid and our 6-year-old daughter Larsen.  She is in a dual language program at school so she’ll be our translator.”

Middaugh will have a whole cast of Americans chasing him on Sunday with the likes of Branden Rakita, Ryan Ignatz, Greg Schott, Michael Nunez and Ian King.  The Canadian Jean-Philippe Thibodeau, who was 3rd in Argentina and 4th in Chile, is also in the mix as well as Guiherme Goncalves from Brazil, who is making his elite debut, Andrés Zúñiga Campos of Costa Rica, also in his elite debut, and Billy Gordon from Panama in his first XTERRA major.

“Yes, this will be my first official XTERRA,” said Gordon, a regular on the ITU circuit. “I’ve done some off-road races in my country but none on the XTERRA World Tour before.  I really wanted to qualify for Maui, and say Aloha to that beautiful place.”

In the women’s race Snyder is looking to put up her third big result in as many weeks and take a commanding lead in the Pan Am Tour.  She won XTERRA Argentina two weeks ago, was 2nd to Barbara Riveros last week, and sits atop the 2017 standings with 142-points.

XTERRA Costa Rica, however, will host the deepest and strongest women’s field to date.

Pan Am Tour runner-up Maia Ignatz is racing, as is third-place finisher Kara LaPoint who posted a career-best 2nd-place finish here in Costa Rica last year.  Other Americans in the line-up include a trio of former age-group World Champs Liz Gruber, Debby Sullivan, and Caroline Colonna.

The Canadian girls are in full force as well with Katharine Carter (6th in the Pan Am Tour last year), Annie Bergen (6th at the Pan Am Championship last year) and Katie Button (the 2016 XTERRA Victoria Champion).

Laura Mira Dias from Brazil, who is currently ranked 5th in the Pan Am Pro Series, finished 4th at this race in both 2014 and 2015, and Anso Marechal from Belgium will be making her elite debut.

XTERRA fans from around the world are invited to tune-in Sunday to the live coverage of the event starting at 7:30 a.m. local time (also 7:30am in Colorado, 9:30am in New York, 10:30am in Brazil). The link to the broadcast URL will be published at costaricaxterra.com and on Facebook (https://www.facebook.com/XterraCostaRica/).

Elite Men’s Start List

2016/2017 Pan Am Tour Rank- Athlete

1/NR – Josiah Middaugh (USA)
4/4 – Branden Rakita (USA)
7/13 – Ian King (USA)
13/NR – Ryan Ignatz (USA)
48/NR – Greg Schott (USA)
51/NR – Michael Nunez (USA)
NR/3 – Jean-Philippe Thibodeau (CAN)
NR/NR – Guiherme Goncalves (BRA)
NR/NR – Billy Gordon (PAN)
NR/NR – Andrés Zúñiga Campos (CRC)
– – – – – –

Elite Women’s Start List

2016/2017 Pan Am Tour Rank- Athlete

1/1 – Suzie Snyder (USA)
2/NR – Maia Ignatz (USA)
3/3 – Kara LaPoint (USA)
6/NR – Katharine Carter (CAN)
7/NR – Debby Sullivan (USA)
8/NR – Caroline Colonna (USA)
9/5 – Laura Mira Dias (BRA)
18/NR – Katie Button (CAN)
24/NR – Annie Bergen (CAN)
NR/NR – Liz Gruber (USA)
NR/NR – Anso Marechal (BEL)

Learn more about the XTERRA Pan Am Tour here.

About TEAM Unlimited/XTERRA

TEAM Unlimited LLC, founded in 1988, is the Hawaii-based television, events, and marketing company that brought off-road triathlon and trail running to the world under the brand name XTERRA.  From a one-off race held on the most remote island chain in the world XTERRA evolved into an endurance sports lifestyle with worldwide appeal. Over the past 20 years XTERRA transcended its status as ‘just a race’ to become a bona-fide way of life for thousands of intrepid athletes as well as an emerging brand in the outdoor industry.  In 2017 XTERRA will offer more than 200 off-road triathlons and trail running events in 33+ countries worldwide and produce 10 adventure television shows for international distribution.  Learn more at xterraplanet.com and xterracontent.com.

XTERRA

XTERRA Pan Am Tour heads to the beach in Costa Rica

Contact Info

Trey Garman
8087922603
trey@xterraplanet.com
www.xterraplanet.com

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