Victoria’s Melanie McQuaid and Colorado’s Josiah Middaugh and won the men’s and women’s pro titles at yesterday’s XTERRA Canada Championship in Whistler, B.C.
In typical fashion, Guelph’s Christine Jeffrey led the 1.5 km swim (16:35) for the women, but her 2:46 lead was easily chewed up by McQuaid whose dominating 30 km bike split of 1:18:28 gave her a massive lead. McQuaid added a 9 km run of 51:39 to earn the win in 2:29:28, which also placed her ninth in the overall race standings. Jeffrey crashed during the bike ride, dislocated her shoulder, but still managed to finish in second (2:45:48). Calgary’s Danelle Kabush, who had her second child three months ago, was third (2:50:29).
“This is home, so it is kind of unfair, as it is all about my kind of single track,” said McQuaid to XTERRA. “This is mountain biking, and XTERRA is a mountain bike triathlon. Different courses suit different people, and I think anyone who can do this race can be proud of their ability. This is much more impressive than doing an Ironman. If someone wants to show off their athletic ability, they should definitely try this race.”
For the men, Calgary’s Jordan Bryden led all out of the water (16:31), but fellow Canadian Mike Vine (from Edmonton) took over the lead during the bike with a 1:06:44 split (just one second more than Middaugh’s top bike ride). However, his lead was not large enough, Middaugh put together the fastest run of 44:21 to take the win in 2:09:30, and his second XTERRA Canada title – he won the first one in 2004. Vine was second (2:10:22), and Colorado’s Branden Rakita was third (2:17:37).
“I didn’t know what to expect as I haven’t been racing these guys all year. I raced in Saipan (in March), but none of the U.S. guys were there, and since then I started my new career working full time at a physical job,” said Vine. “I came out to have a good time today and it felt good to go full throttle and let it rip. Josiah had a really good rid. For him to come up here and ride these trails that well is impressive.”
“He (Vine) started the run about 40 seconds up and I got him on the top of the first climb. He stayed pretty close. He could always see me, so it wasn’t over. I had to keep working,” said Middaugh. “It feels good to have a win, I’ve been close all year and I needed this. When you’re on you’re on, I felt good all day.”
As age groupers, Edmonton’s Mike Cabigon (Men 35-39), and Calgary’s Calvin Zaryski (Men 40-44) placed seventh and eighth overall respectively.
Top 5 Men
1. Josiah Middaugh (USA) 2:09:30
2. Mike Vine (CAN) 2:10:22
3. Branden Rakita (USA) 2:17:37
4. Cody Waite (USA) 2:20:41
5. Adam Wirth (USA) 2:23:31
Top 5 Women
1. Melanie McQuaid (CAN) 2:29:28
2. Christine Jeffrey (CAN) 2:45:48
3. Danelle Kabush (CAN) 2:50:29
4. Joanna Harrington (CAN) 2:59:09
5. Tanis Tomlin (CAN) 3:00:47