Conrad Stoltz of South Africa made it two-for-two at the ITU Cross Triathlon World Championships by successfully defending his title on Saturday.
Stoltz won the inaugural event last year in Spain, and won it again this year at Oak Mountain State Park in Pelham, Alabama. The event was held in America this year as a partner event with the XTERRA Southeast Championship triathlon.
Stoltz, 39, completed the course in 2 hours, 12 minutes, 11 seconds. It consisted of a 1.5-kilometer swim, a 30-kilometer mountain bike and a 10-kilometer trail run.
Craig Evans of Tennessee was an impressive second on what he considers one of his “home courses.” Evans, 34, had the lead out of the swim, and rode in front of Stoltz for much of the bike.
However, Stoltz made his winning push in the last 10 kilometers of the bike and held the lead the rest of the way.
Christopher Legh of Australia was third in 2:14:11, followed by Josiah Middaugh of Colorado (2:15:47), and Richard Stannard of Great Britain (2:16:10).
Lesley Paterson of Great Britain won her first ITU world title in the women’s division with a strong trail run. She was as far back as fifth place early in the bike, but eventually passed all the others in front of her.
Canada’s Melanie McQuaid, the 2011 ITU women’s world champion, was ahead by more than two minutes after the bike, but Paterson chased her down quickly and then ran away.
Paterson, 31, finished with a time of 2:24:39, while McQuaid came in second at 2:27:15.
Carla Van Huyssteen of South Africa had the fastest swim time and finished third overall in 2:28:34.
Suzie Snyder of Virginia was fourth in 2:29:14, and Colorado’s Shonny Vanlandingham was fifth in 2:29:15. It was Vanlandingham’s first race since undergoing knee surgery last October.