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Coast to Coast Australian New Zealand Showdown Looms

Coast to Coast Australian New Zealand Showdown Looms

Australian multi-sport star Jared Kohlar is posed to set up an intriguing trans-Tasman battle with Kiwi Coast to Coast One day world championship men’s favourites Sam Clark and Sam Manson.

Kohlar is spearheading a number of Australian entries in this year’s iconic multi-sport event being held on February 12th and 13th and is in good form having recently set a new course record over the Albany Adventurethon course in Australia which included segments of rock and boulder hopping similar to the Coast to Coast mountain run.

Karen Masson leads the Australian female entries and also has good form which includes winning the Adventurethon National Challenge Ultra distance event in Townsville.

Kohlar lost his last battle with Clark at the Augusta Adventure Fest in Western Australia losing time in the bike leg but hopes to mount a challenge based on a strong performance in the 33 kilometre mountain run over Goat Pass and then attack the paddle in the Waimakairi River.

Adventurethon Series Event Director Joel Savage was ‘excited’ by the potential of the New Zealand verses Australia showdown on race day, expecting it to be close between Clark and Kohlar.

“I think the bike strength goes Clarks way so the question is will it be possible for Kohlar to out run and paddle him or will Clark use the cycle legs to damage Kohlar? Either way it’s set to be a real trans-Tasman battle that should add some real spice to the racing.”

“Jarad is a really accomplished technical runner and can paddle a river well and has done the Coast to Coast before so knows what to expect across all disciplines,” Savage said. “He knows Clark has form and is paddling red hot; they both won a surfski race in Australia in a double together the week prior to the Augusta adventure fest.”

Savage said that having seen both Clark and Kohlar competing the Magnetic Island adventurethon and getting similar overall times he rates them as very close and both very capable to beat each other so he feels much will depend on their race plans, how the body performs on the day and that everything goes their way without any ‘surprises.’

“Both are great paddlers with weapons in different areas so will it be a runner or a cyclist that takes the win?”

For the women’s race Masson is a proven performer who won the Adventurethon National Challenge 2015 and she has been preparing meticulously for the Coast to Coast since July last year. Masson has a strong bike and run leg with paddling being her newest discipline.

Savage said Masson has been working hard on her paddling with Australian coach Matt OGarey and has made some real gains with her biggest challenge now being a new river and unfamiliar surrounds of New Zealand.

“She has a very competitive spirit and has raced Elite Xterra in the past and has had a good line up of wins in ultra-distance events,” Savage said. “Although she is 48 years old her training is spot on and she has a racers mindset so I think she will be one to watch, at least if she has any sniff of the top spot by the last bike leg she will be in with a shot.”

Masson will have overcome Kiwi based Fin and two time winner Elina Ussher and well performed Corrine Smit to make the top step of the podium.

Five time Coast to Coast winner turned race Director Richard Ussher said he was looking forward to seeing the Australian’s take on the Kiwis and that it definitely set up a battle for Trans-Tasman multi-sport bragging rights.

“We are keen on growing our international competitors and there is no doubt Jared and Karen led some talented Australians at this year’s Coast to Coast that will add some real spice to the racing.”


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