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Written by    Thursday, 08 April 2010 05:50    PDF Print E-mail
Xterra Triathlon and Trail News







Kiwi multisport legend Richard Ussher is back in Rotorua to defend his title at Saturday's XTERRA New Zealand Championship.

Ussher (pictured) won the eighth edition of the race last year, joining an all-star cast of previous winners that include Terrenzo Bozzone (2008), Tim Wilding (2007), Hamish Carter (2004-2006) and Sam Mallard (2005).

Last year’s race was Ussher's first experience in off-road triathlon, and he went on to the XTERRA World Championship in Maui where he finished 11th (despite racing without a seat post for most of the grueling ride).

"I had such a great time at the XTERRA race last year, I'm really looking forward to getting back there and having a crack at defending the title." Ussher said.

Ussher will have some tough competition on his hands with second and third place-getters also returning from last year as well as some new boys on the start line looking to crack the podium.

2009 runner-up Scott Thorne will be looking to make up the one minute that separated him from first place and the XTERRA title, as will experienced XTERRA racer and mountain bike legend Mark Leishman who was third last year.

Also in the mix is 18-year-old Michael Poole, recent winner of the 2010 Port of Tauranga Half Ironman, and Japanese pro Yu Yumoto who had a very successful 2009 season with a fourth-place finish at Ironman Malaysia and second-place showing at XTERRA Japan.

The women’s field will have an international flavor as well with 2001 XTERRA World Champion Anke Erlank from South Africa as well as Ironman and Adventure Racing champion Christine Sym from Australia.

Erlank (pictured) is now living in Matamata on the North Island of New Zealand where her Scottish husband manages a dairy farm. While her training routine hasn’t been as intense the last nine years – she is enjoying New Zealand’s training-friendly weather and is working mainly in the local sports center, running the swim club, teaching fitness classes and in her spare time heading just down the road to the Rotorua for some mountain biking – so the training levels can’t be too bad!

Sym will be coming into the race in great shape, finishing her 2009 season with a second place at Ironman Western Australia in December. Sym is no stranger to winning either, with seven wins in the Australian Anaconda Adventure Race series over the past four years. 

Last year's runner-up in the women's race, Susie Wood, will be representing the Kiwis and looking to take her first XTERRA title, losing last year by just two minutes to Nicola Leary.

While the professional field is always a highlight of the XTERRA Festival, it is more than just a pro race, annually hosting more than 2,000 athletes in what is considered the world's largest single day XTERRA off-road triathlon festival.  Competitors can choose from walking, running, mountain biking as well as the individual and team XTERRA Triathlon events.

For more information visit




Three half-hour XTERRA Adventure television shows documenting outdoor sports in Utah and Maui are garnering a massive amount of television exposure on Fox Sports Net affiliates across the country this month.

The 2009 shows produced by TEAM TV completed their nationwide syndication run on network affiliates ABC, NBC, CBS, and FOX and now the prestigious Fox Sports Network (FSN) and Comcast Sportsnet cable channels are airing the programs nationwide.  

This month alone those three shows will head into 164 million households. The date and time of each broadcast is available online at and highlights can be seen year-round at TEAM TV’s 24/7 web TV network,

Content for the shows include highlights from the 2009 XTERRA Winter World and USA Championship races at Snowbasin Resort, clips from XTERRA Worlds, and a wide variety of activities like scuba diving, rock climbing, windsurfing and paragliding in locations ranging from Utah’s Wasatch Range to Maui's Haleakala Volcano.










 Apr. 10 - XTERRA Rotorua Half-Marathon Trail Run
Apr. 10 - XTERRA New Zealand Championship
Apr. 10 - XTERRA Bethpage 5k (Bethpage, NY)
Apr. 17 - XTERRA Muleshoe 10/20km Trail Runs (Spicewood, TX)
Apr. 17 - XTERRA Doug Harris Memorial Trail Run 10k (Clemson, SC)
Apr. 18 - XTERRA Redwood Peak 5/15k (Oakland, CA)
Apr. 18 - XTERRA Muleshoe (Spicewood, TX)
Apr. 18 - XTERRA Caloosahatchee (Ft. Myers, FL)
Apr. 24 - XTERRA Fort Yargo (Winder, GA)
Apr. 24 - XTERRA Lake Las Vegas 5k/10k/21k
Apr. 24 - XTERRA Vulture's Knob 11k (Wooster, OH)
Apr. 25 - XTERRA Crystal Cove 5/17k Trail Run (Newport, CA)
Apr. 25 - XTERRA Lake Las Vegas Duathlon (Henderson, NV)
Apr. 25 - XTERRA West Championship
(Henderson, NV)



The 2010 XTERRA South Central Championship (May 23 in Waco, Texas), XTERRA East Championship (June 20 in Richmond, Virginia), and XTERRA Mountain Championship (July 17 in Avon, Colorado) will serve as qualifying events for TEAM USA spots into the inaugural 2011 ITU Cross Triathlon (aka off-road triathlon) World Championship race in Extremadura, Spain on April 30, 2011.

Note that this does not replace or have bearing on qualifying procedures for the 2010 XTERRA World Championship in Maui on Oct. 24, or future XTERRA World Championships.

The top five age group finishers in each age group (18-19, 20-24, up to 90 years of age) at each of these three XTERRA championship distance events, rolling down to 10th place after the age-up rule, will qualify for the ITU race in 2011.

There are four total qualifying events, which also includes the Scott Tinley Adventure off-road tri on October 3, 2010 in San Luis Obispo.

Complete details can be found at



The XTERRA U.S. Pro Series kicks off on April 25 at Loews Lake Las Vegas Resort in Henderson, Nevada and a heavy pro field will be on-site to ring in the new season.

The start list for the XTERRA West Championship features the defending Series' champs Conrad Stoltz and Melanie McQuaid, all of the top 11 men from last year's Pro Series, and four of the top five women (excluding only Danelle Kabush who is due with her second child in May).

Rk-denotes finishing position in the 2009 XTERRA U.S. Pro Series.


Rk Name
1 Conrad Stoltz, RSA
2 Nico Lebrun, FRA
3 Josiah Middaugh, USA
4 Mike Vine, CAN
5 Dan Hugo, RSA
6 Seth Wealing, USA
7 Branden Rakita, USA
8 Brian Smith, USA
9 Craig Evans, USA
10 Cody Waite, USA
11 Will Kelsay, USA
16 Ryan DeCook, USA
17 Scott Gall, USA
28 Chris Newell, USA
NR Trevor Glavin, USA

Rk Name
1 Melanie McQuaid, CAN
2 Shonny Vanlandingham, USA
3 Renata Bucher, SUI
5 Christine Jeffrey, CAN
6 Jenny Smith, NZL
8 Emma Garrard, USA
11 Lesley Paterson, GBR
12 Tracy Thelen, USA
19 Brandyn Roark Gray, USA
NR Rosemarie Gerspacher, CAN
NR Katie Ellis, USA
NR Fabiola Corona, MEX


Josiah Middaugh (pictured) was the top American in the 2009 XTERRA U.S. Pro Series for the fifth time in six years.

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Last Updated ( Thursday, 08 April 2010 05:52 )

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