Minutes Separate Top 3 Women In 2 Day Individual Kathmandu Coast To Coast
In near-perfect conditions, Christchurch athlete Courtney Hawke has seized the lead on the first day in the 2 Day Individual Open category of the Kathmandu Coast to Coast, clocking in at 6 hours, 33 minutes, and 55 seconds. With just under three minutes separating the top 3 women in this year’s 2-Day Female Individual category, anticipation is high for who will claim victory when they cross New Brighton’s finish line tomorrow afternoon.
Leading from the front throughout the day, Hawke found herself in a solid group during the ride, setting her up nicely as she heads into the second day. “It’s been a fantastic day out there. The weather has been incredible, and the support from everyone has been amazing – I couldn’t have asked for better conditions,” says Hawke.
Following closely behind is Palmerston North’s Sophie Rutherford, trailing by a minute and a half with a time of 6 hours, 35 minutes, and 22 seconds. Just four seconds separate Rutherford from third-place finisher Ella Julina, who completed the course in 6 hours, 35 minutes, and 36 seconds.
In the highly competitive 2-Day Male category, Marlborough’s Finn Mckenzie, also leading the newly introduced Elite Youth category, claimed victory with a time of 5 hours, 9 minutes, and 18 seconds. Mackenzie holds a three-minute lead over second-place finisher Sam King from Rolleston, while Hawke’s Bay's Campbell Grey secured third place with a time of 5 hours, 27 minutes, and 1 second.
These athletes are among the 950 2 Day competitors who embarked on the 55-kilometer bike ride from Kumara Beach on the South Island's West Coast to Aickens Corner. There, they transitioned from cycling to off-road running shoes, navigated the Otira River, traversed the Deception Valley, and conquered Goat Pass, culminating in a 30.5-kilometer finish at Klondyke Corner.
The 2 Day competitors start their second day in two-minute intervals from 7am tomorrow from Klondyke Corner with a 17-kilometre cycle to Mt. White Bridge, followed by a 70-kilometre kayaking journey, before finishing with a 70-kilometre bike ride down South Eyre Road into New Brighton beach in Christchurch.
Longest Day participants will commence their journey from Kumara Beach at 6 am.