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Athletes defend titles in XTERRA UDC Finance Triathlon

Athletes defend titles in XTERRA UDC Finance Triathlon

World XTERRA 2013 title holder and Coast to Coast winner Braden Currie fought hard from start to finish to take out the men’s title in the 2014 XTERRA UDC Finance Triathlon in Arrowtown today (Saturday March 8).

The strong field of 160 individual and 60 team competitors braved the cold and icy waters of Lake Wanaka for a 2km swim before tackling a 47km mountain bike and a 15km mountain run over the historic Miners Trail course between Wanaka and Arrowtown.

Defending his title and winning in 3hr 55min 25sec, which failed to beat his course record of 3:48:05 in 2012, Currie, from Wanaka, said he loved the race.

“The start line was hard case, everyone was standing around talking and all of a sudden the hooter went!” he said.

“The swim in Lake Wanaka was magic, beautiful fresh water you can just drink, then I just settled in and paced myself. The Motatapu is awesome, it’s a tough course for XTERRA but I enjoyed the whole thing. The run’s always my strength but it’s tough and physical.”

Female winner Nicky Samuels, also from Wanaka, came home in 4:17:10 , defending her title from 2013 and breaking her own course record by nearly four minutes. She said the race was “brutal as expected” but liked to support local events.

“The bike was better than last year because last night’s rain stopped the dust, but there’s just no easy way to do the run,” she said.

The XTERRA UDC Finance Triathlon is the equivalent to a Half Ironman and also featured world class athletes such as Scott Molina and Simone Maier.

Up for grabs from today’s race were limited age group qualifying spots plus Pro spots to the XTERRA World Championships in Hawaii.


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