XTERRA World Tour Wrap from Prachatice and Tapalpa

August 5, 2019

The XTERRA World Tour hosted XTERRA Mexico in the mountains of Jalisco and the XTERRA European Championship in the historic village of Prachatice in the Czech Republic on Saturday. In Mexico, a pair of Kiwis took top honors and in Europe the top spots were swept by French athletes.

XTERRA Mexico Wrap

Sam Osborne and Samantha Kingsford from New Zealand captured the 12th annual XTERRA Mexico off-road triathlon men’s and women’s elite titles on a beautiful day at Los Reflejos in Tapalpa, Jalisco on Saturday, August 3, 2019.

It’s the 12th career XTERRA World Tour win for Osborne and his fifth this season, while it’s the fourth XTERRA major title for Kingsford, her third this year.

In the men’s elite race Mexican elite Arturo Rodriguez was first out of the cold, 18-degree, wetsuit-legal swim but his lead was short-lived as Osborne, the XTERRA Pan Am Tour points leader, and Branden Rakita from the U.S. were close behind, followed by Leonard Saucedo, reigning XTERRA World Champ Rom Akerson from Costa Rica, and Karsten Madsen from Canada.

Once on the bike Osborne and Madsen raced to the front and pulled away from the rest of the field. The two arrived at the bike to run transition together and it all came down to the run. Osborne had the faster transition and sprinted the first kilometer to put a gap on Madsen that he held to the finish, crossing the line in two hours, 19 minutes and 31 seconds.

“I couldn’t be happier,” said Osborne, who increased his lead in the Tour standings with the win. “On Tuesday I had a crash on the bike while pre-riding and I walloped my knee bad. It was the same knee I hurt at the start of the year in a similar crash, so I didn’t know if I was going to be on the start line. Adrenaline does wonderful things for the body though, so when the race started, I didn’t notice anything. I had a half decent swim, but everyone is a good swimmer here, so I needed to make the ride as hard as possible.”

And make it hard on everyone he did. The Kiwi was up front by himself early on, but Madsen was doing some strong work behind him and caught up by midway and the two rode together.

“Karsten was riding pretty well,” said Osborne. “He bridged the gap before the big climb, and we got into our work together and rode so hard there was no way anyone else was going to bridge across into that. I just hoped I didn’t burn too many matches on the bike, so I still had something to run with.”

Osborne started fast on the run too, and carried it through to the finish, posting the fastest run split and taking the tape 33-seconds ahead of Madsen.

“I know Karsten can run so I just had to believe in myself when we came into T2 together,” said Osborne. “My run training is going well, and I knew if I had a clean transition and put on the pressure straight away I could do it.”

As for his thoughts on the event in general, Osborne said, “It’s unreal. We were driving in and I said to Branden, ‘Where the heck are you taking me?’ It’s the mountains and the race and that’s it. But it was a proper battle out there with the mud and the ride up the side of the mountain. It’s a gnarly trail, and I consider myself a pretty good technical rider, so that should tell you something. I mean, I was trying to dial in a line off a rock. It’s proper hectic.”

Madsen, who posted the fastest run split two weeks ago at XTERRA Beaver Creek, had the fastest bike time today to make it a really exciting two-man race for the tape.

“I made a big falter and couldn’t get my foot in my shoe in T2, because my feet got numb on the ride because you’re going through these cold puddles and putting so much energy in,” said Madsen. “And it took me the whole first loop of the bike to catch Sam. We were pinning it together and he was hanging on my wheel. We kept the tempo high, and for most of the bike I was feeling really good and controlled and was working to keep the altitude in check. I felt good and the power stayed on but on the run, it was so tough. Sam just wasn’t faltering. I emptied the tank to get to him but couldn’t do it.”

Madsen’s run split was the second best on the day, just 22-seconds behind Osborne.

“At the end of the day Sam is an athlete I have tremendous respect for,” added Madsen. “I’ve said it before, I think he’s the man to watch in Maui this year so to be slinging with him and throwing hay-makers and making him run hard, that’s extremely motivating. Having guys like Rom Akerson in the field and Paco and Rakita. These are all guys at the highest level and being able to build off Beaver Creek, this is fantastic.”

For Rakita, who has come to Tapalpa for eight straight years, he spent most of the ride and all the run by himself in third place, about two minutes back of the leaders. He said the race was great, but it’s the destination and the people who make the event so special.

“The crew at XTERRA Mexico, Leo and Selene and Los Reflejos, they are absolute fantastic, they put on a first-class event and take such good care of us,” he said. “And it’s a lot of fun and coming here with a big crew and staying in a rental house in the forest together. Such a cool experience. We’re all kind of stumbling and bumbling through with limited Spanish speaking skills, but I love coming down here.”

Rakita has another big event next week, his wedding day on August 9 in Durango, CO.

“Yup, getting married in a week, and I can’t wait to get back to my bride, Briana, who has been such an integral part of everything I’ve done over the last seven years. She means the world to me and is also a big part of the XTERRA family.”

Akerson, like Rakita, was in his own world sitting in fourth most of the morning.

“Well, living on the beach and then coming up to altitude isn’t the smartest thing, but I guess I’d rather win Maui than Mexico,” he joked.  “You have to look at the positive side of everything. I’ve got good wins this year (XTERRA Argentina and Chile) and you can’t win everything. And today, those guys killed it. Plus, I think you learn more when you don’t win, and I’m for sure going to go back home and train harder and come into Maui as strong as I can. There’s not much else to say, except thank God Maui is at sea level.”

Rounding out the top five was former Olympian Francisco Serrano, who was coming off an injury and hadn’t run in nearly two weeks.

“I’m really just happy to have finished and to be healthy, enjoy the experience, and support XTERRA Mexico. It was such a beautiful day, and a really great field of elites who are racing at a really high level.”

Elite Men Results

Place Name, NATTimePoints
1Sam Osborne, NZL2:19:31100
2Karsten Madsen, CAN2:20:0490
3Branden Rakita, USA2:23:5582
4Rom Akerson, CRC2:28:0875
5Francisco Serrano, MEX2:33:0869
6Leonardo Saucedo, MEX2:34:0663
7Arturo Rodriguez, MEX3:09:2658

In the women’s elite race Mexican Sofia Rodrigues, in her XTERRA professional debut, had the fastest swim, followed by Samantha Kingsford from New Zealand, Suzie Snyder from the U.S., the 2018 Pan Am Tour Champ Fabiola Corona from Mexico, and Valentina Carvalho from Chile.

As the race transitioned to the hills on the bike Kingsford and Corona took to the front, and it wasn’t until the last sections of the bike when Corona got a 50-second gap on Kingsford and was first on to the run. Kingsford showed a great burst of speed in the first 5K to erase that deficit and take the lead, which she held to the finish with a winning time of two hours, 49 minutes, and 33 seconds.

“I didn’t feel very good yesterday so I was thinking today would be a shamble,” said Kingsford. “But there weren’t many punchy climbs and you could get into a good rhythm even though it was extremely muddy. I passed Rodrigues quickly on the bike and Suzie and Fabiola were coming up fast. Fabiola and I stayed together on the bike, to-ing and fro-ing. She got a little bit of a gap on me on the rocky section, showed her experience on her home trail. Coming into transition I knew I had to keep as close as I could to her and managed to slowly catch her on the run and kept going.  Instead of being the hunted, hunting someone down kind of pushes you a bit more.”

As for Corona, she said she gave everything she had and was happy to do so well in front of her family and friends in Tapalpa, where she spent her childhood playing in the hills.

“That was tough,” said Corona. “I caught Samantha and we were fighting each other the whole time, and I was able to get a gap of about one minute on the downhill, but Samantha is a good runner, so I needed a bigger gap. And then I had a long transition because I put on socks, just because I prefer to be comfortable than have blisters. It was almost at the end of the first loop when Samantha caught me and even then, I was pushing to catch her, but I didn’t. I’m happy with second place here with my family, the weather was perfect, and I feel very good. A lot of people were here to cheer me on so that was very good and like gasoline for me.”

Snyder, the reigning XTERRA U.S. Champ and two-time winner of XTERRA Mexico (2016-2017), won XTERRA Beaver Creek at altitude two weeks ago and was solid all around today but said she just couldn’t get enough oxygen to fuel her legs to victory here.

“I was in striking distance through the first half of the bike but then they pulled away, my legs just wouldn’t go,” said Snyder, who pushed through the anguish to run home into third place. “I really did have to mentally push myself to get through today, because my body wouldn’t go as fast as I wanted it to.”

Valentina Carvallo finished fourth, and Laura Mira from Brazil rounded out the top five.

Elite Women

Place Name, NATTimePoints
1Samantha Kingsford, NZL2:49:33100
2Fabiola Corona, MEX2:50:0690
3Suzie Snyder, USA2:56:3982
4Valentina Carvallo, CHI3:11:4775
5Laura Mira, BRA3:45:5169
6Sofia Rodriguez ,MEX3:51:5863

2019 (Tapalpa) Sam Osborne, Samantha Kingsford
2018 (Tapalpa) Josiah Middaugh, Fabiola Corona
2017 (Tapalpa) Josiah Middaugh, Suzie Snyder
2016 (Tapalpa) Rom Akerson, Suzie Snyder
2015 (Tapalpa) Josiah Middaugh, Fabiola Corona
2014 (Tapalpa) Irving Perez, Fabiola Corona
2013 (Tapalpa) Leonardo Chacon, Fabiola Corona
2012 (Tapalpa) Francisco Serrano, Renata Bucher
2011 (Tapalpa) Seth Wealing, Shonny Vanlandingham
2010 (Valle de Bravo) Seth Wealing, Fabiola Corona
2009 (Valle de Bravo) Seth Wealing, Shonny Vanlandingham
2006 (Puerto Vallarta) Francisco Serrano, Jamie Whitmore

Osborne, Kingsford Lead Pan Am Tour Standings

Today’s event was the 8th of 10 stops on the XTERRA Pan American Tour, and an important gold race that helped shape the leaderboard heading into the final two stops at XTERRA Dominican Republic before the finale in Utah on September 7.  Osborne and Kingsford retained their lead atop the standings, and elites count their best six scores to determine final positions.

After 8, as of 8.3.19         
 ELITE MEN         
1Sam Osborne, NZL465xx10010075x90100
2Josiah Middaugh, USA332xxx906775100x
3Branden Rakita, USA321xxx6356516982
4Karsten Madsen, CAN300xxxx61678290
5Will Ross, USA2604356xx516149x
6Rom Akerson, CRC2257575xxxxx75
7Kieran McPherson, NZL2166767x82xxxx
8Felipe Moletta, BRA212616190xxxxx
9Alejandro Bulacio, ARG156514758xxxxx
10Rafael Juriti, BRA153395163xxxxx
11Evan Pardi, USA146xxx5847x41x
12Brian Smith, USA122xxx69xx53x
13Elliot Bach, USA120xxx75xx45x
14Ryan Ignatz, USA112xxx49xx63x
15Alex Roberts, NZL995643xxxxxx
16Alex Rhodes, GBR8536x49xxxxx
17Sebastian Neef, GER82xx82xxxxx
18Diogo Malagon, BRA75xx75xxxxx
19Mike Meehan, USA75xxxxxx75x
20Marcus Fernandez, BRA69xx69xxxxx
21Francisco Serrano, MEX69xxxxxxx69
22Leonardo Saucedo, MEX63xxxxxxx63
23Brad Zoller, USA58xxxxxx58x
24Arturo Rodriguez, MEX58xxxxxxx58
25Edmond Roy, CAN56xxxxx56xx
26Hugo Barbosa, BRA53xx53xxxxx
27Walter Schafer, USA53xxx53xxxx
28Lucas Mendez, ARG4747xxxxxxx
29Matthew Alford, USA47xxxxx47xx
30Raul Furtado, BRA45xx45xxxxx
31Will Kelsay, USA45xxx45xxxx
32Barret Fishner, USA43xxxx43xxx
33Vince Bethumeur, CAN43xxxxx43xx
34Edivando Cruz, BRA41xx41xxxxx
35Zach Winter, USA41xxx41xxxx
36Carlos Chang, CAN39xxxxx39xx
37Ronaldo Ferreira, BRA37xx37xxxxx
38Alex Willis, USA37xxxxxx37x
39Jean-Philippe Thibodeau, CAN36xxxxx36xx
 ELITE WOMEN         
1Samantha Kingsford, NZL432xx1008275x75100
2Suzie Snyder, USA349xxx10067x10082
3Laura Mira, BRA323676175xx51x69
4Julie Baker, USA221xxx7556x90x
5Valentina Carvallo, CHI240x7590xxxx75
6Maia Ignatz, USA151xxx69xx82x
7Katie Button, CAN126xxxx5175xx
8Deanna McCurdy, USA116xxx49x67xx
9Tess Amer, USA116xxx53xx63x
10Kelli Montgomery, USA106xxx45x61xx
11Lesley Paterson, USA90xxx90xxxx
12Sabrina Gobbo, BRA82xx82xxxxx
13Erika Simon, ARG7575xxxxxxx
14Mirian Gomes, BRA69xx69xxxxx
15Anne Nevin, NOR69xxxxxx69x
16Johandri Leicester, RSA67x67xxxxxx
17Amanda Felder, USA63xxx63xxxx
18Melanie McQuaid, CAN61xxxx61xxx
19Jessie Koltz, USA58xxx58xxxx
20Nicole Valentine, USA58xxxxxx58x
21Javiera Gainza, CHI56x56xxxxxx
22Amanda Bayer, USA56xxxxx56xx
23Kara LaPoint, USA53xxxxxx53x
24Michelle Mehnert, USA49xxxxxx49x
25Emanuela Bandol, CAN47xxxx47xxx
26Anne Usher, USA43xxxx43xxx
27Allison Arensman, USA41xxx41xxxx
28Brittany Oliver, USA37xxx37xxxx
29Fabiola Corona, MEX90xxxxxxx90
30Sofia Rodriguez, MEX63xxxxxxx63

XTERRA European Championship Wrap

Arthur Serrieres and Morgane Riou from France captured the 2019 XTERRA European Championship and 16th annual XTERRA Czech off-road triathlon elite titles with winning times of 2:31:41 and 3:01:03, respectively, on Saturday, August 03, 2019 in Prachatice.

For Serrieres, it was his fourth XTERRA World Tour win and his second in 2019 after taking the victory at XTERRA Greece in April. For Riou, it was her sixth career win on the XTERRA World Tour and fourth in a row this season.

The very best professional and amateur off-road triathletes from across Europe and around the world gathered in Prachatice for a point-to-point race that combined a 1500-meter swim in the warm waters of Kristanovicky Lake with a challenging 35-kilometer point-to-point mountain bike through Sumava National Park, and ending with a grueling 10K trail run that finished along the cobblestone streets in the city center.

In the men’s elite race Matteo Bozzato was first out of the water followed by Maxim Chane along with Ben Allen 27 seconds back. A big group including Ruben Ruzafa, Doug Hall, Brad Weiss, Butte, Tiago Maia and local favorite Lukas Kocar, was just 10 seconds back followed closely by Serrieres.

Once on the bike, Ruzafa took charge and was all by himself after 18K. Weiss was holding second 35 seconds back. Serrieres was working with Chane to close the gap and were one minute and 37 seconds behind the leader. Hall was holding fifth place behind the French duo followed by Carloni, Forissier and Allen another 20 seconds behind. Just before reaching T2, Ruzafa had opened the lead over Weiss to one minute and 25 seconds.

“The race today was good for me,” said Ruzafa. ” I had a good swim and on the bike I tried to push to gain some time. On the run I was confident as I had one minute and 30 seconds lead but at the last 2 kilometers I saw Arthur Serrieres behind me. He passed me, I tried to follow him but he’s a very, very good runner.  I’m happy for Arthur – for what he’s done.  He’s doing very well.”

Forrissier pushed hard from behind and was riding together with Serrieres and Chane just three minutes behind the leader. One minute back from the three Frenchmen was Hall with Carloni.  Dafflon had made a big move to ninth place with Zadak, the best Czech elite athlete of the race today. Local favorite Lucas Kocar broke his saddle early on the bike and had to pull out of the race.

On the run, Serrieres managed to push hard and closed the gap to Ruzafa and Weiss with every passing kilometer. At the start of the second lap he was just 20 seconds behind Weiss and only 50 seconds behind Ruzafa. Serrieres kept his amazing running pace and by the second half of the second lap he took the lead and crossed the finish line to win his first ever XTERRA European title.

“It’s amazing, I am so happy,” said Serrieres. “It’s my first big win of my XTERRA career. For the first time I was with the lead pack on the swim. On the bike I knew I had to save some energy for the run as this year I know that I can run very fast. I am sharing the same room with Weiss and we said that one of us should win this today. I will not celebrate my victory tonight as I want to perform well tomorrow at the Short track”

Ruben finished second and Weiss finished third.  Forrisier, who was the only one in the field that can keep pace with the other Arthur, was paying for his efforts earlier on the bike and settled for fourth. Chane, with a very stable performance all day long, finished fifth. Dafflon finished sixth leaving local Zadak in seventh.

“Coming back from injury has definitely been a big battle as a lost two months of run training,” said Weiss. “Having the European Championship here in Prachatice is awesome. I’ve never managed to win this race but I’ve been on the podium almost every time.  It treats me well – but not well enough. Starting the run I knew I was in a bit of trouble, especially with both Arthurs racing so well.I am very happy I managed to hold off Arthur Forissier – that’s a big step in the right direction. And Arthur Serrieres, who ended up winning the race from 3 minutes down off of the bike, was very impressive.”

Complete Results/Photos-Videos

European Championship Elite Men Results

PosName, NATTimePoints
1Arthur Serrieres , FRA02:31:41.9100
2Ruben Ruzafa, ESP02:32:04.990
3Bradley Weiss, RSA02:34:14.982
4Arthur Forissier, FRA02:35:19.975
5Maxim Chane, FRA02:36:57.969
6Xavier Dafflon, SUI02:37:37.663
7Karel Zadak, CZE02:38:57.458
8Cedric Fleureton, FRA02:39:19.153
9Francois Carloni, FRA02:39:27.649
10Jens Emil Sloth Nielsen, DNK02:40:21.645
11Doug Hall, GBR02:40:50.641
12Felix Forissier, FRA02:41:09.437
13Ben Allen, AUS02:42:31.134
14Andreas Silberbauer, AUT02:43:09.631
15Lucas Van Deynze, BEL02:43:47.128

In the women’s elite race, UK’s Nicole Walters was first out of the water with fellow country woman, Jacqui Allen, hot on her heels. 20 seconds behind them was local Tereza Durdiakova followed by Brigitta Poor another 40 seconds back. After them was a group including Penny Slater, Maria Calleja and Pavlina Vargova.

On the bike Allen took the lead but was caught by Loanne Duvoisin and they rode together at the half way point. Poor was in third two minutes behind the duo followed by Peroncini, Slatter and Buss. Karaskova and Riou who exited the water together were now 4 minutes behind the leader and pushing hard to close the gap. Walters was struggling and dropped back to ninth.

“It was a really tough race as I was freezing after the swim without wetsuit,” said Karaskova. “I had a crash at the beginning of the bike and was feeling empty after that. I stayed with Riou on the bike and the first part of the run. Duvoicin pushed me to the limits for the last 2k, so I am really happy with second place. The crowd was amazing today cheering my name. I was smiling all the time.”

Entering the second and hardest part of the bike loop the rain poured down but the shower quickly passed. Duvoisin suffered some mechanical problems which allowed Allen to extend her lead and arrive first into transition. Peroncini moved to second after passing Poor and Duvoisin.

“It was a hard day,” said Duvoisin. “I had a good swim. I wanted to stay focused on the bike but had some mechanical problems with my wheel and lost about 5 minutes. I came in to transition in fifth place but found the power to push on the second run loop to finish third.”    

Riou and Karaskova were still together entering transition for the run. The duo pushed hard on the first loop of the run to close the gap and was just 10 seconds behind Allen heading into the second lap of 5K.  For the fourth XTERRA race in a row she was unstoppable, passed Allen and crossed the finish line to capture her first XTERRA European Champion title. Karaskova passed Peroncini and Allen to finish second. Duvoisin who exited transition in fifth place pushed hard on the run and finished third with Allen in fourth. Peroncini had a good day overall to finish fifth.

“I had a really bad swim today,” said Riou. “At the start of the bike I had a small crash and I was little worried as I broke my collarbone early this season. I pushed hard on the bike and was able to start the run with Helena. She is a very good runner but I was feeling good and kept pushing. This is my first European title and I am so happy.”

European Championship Elite Women

PosName, NATTimePoints
1Morgane Riou, FRA03:01:03.2100
2Helena Karaskova-Erbenova, CZE03:01:48.090
3Loanne Duvoisin, SUI03:02:28.582
4Jacqui Allen, GBR03:03:00.075
5Eleonora Peroncini, ITA03:07:10.469
6Penny Slater, AUS03:07:27.263
7Eva Garcia Gonzalez, ESP03:07:27.758
8Marta Menditto, ITA03:08:42.953
9Matilde Bolzan, ITA03:09:56.949
10Brigitta Poor, HUN03:10:25.945
11Sandra Mairhofer, ITA03:10:47.741
12Tereza Durdiakova, CZE03:10:49.737
13Ladina Buss, SUI03:12:56.934
14Maria Calleja Aguayo, ESP03:20:09.131
15Janni Spangsberg, BNK03:21:16.628

The XTERRA European Championship in Czech, was the 11th of 14 races of the XTERRA European Tour, where amateur athletes could qualify for XTERRA Worlds. Next up XTERRA Germany in Zittau on Aug 17th.

For more info please visit www.xterraplanet.com


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