MIDDAUGH, PATERSON BREAK THROUGH AT XTERRA USA CHAMPIONSHIPS

Josiah Middaugh of Colorado and Lesley Paterson from Scotland earned long-awaited victories at the XTERRA USA Championship on Saturday, Sept. 22.

Middaugh was the overall winner, breaking a string of frustratingly-close performances in this event. Paterson took the women’s title after back-to-back runner-up showings in 2010 and 2011.

Conrad Stoltz of South Africa placed fourth, but earned enough points to win his unprecedented 10th XTERRA U.S. Pro Series championship. Paterson captured her first XTERRA U.S. Pro Series title in the women’s division.

MEN’S RACE

Middaugh, 34, has been the top-ranked American male in the XTERRA Series for seven of the past eight years, but until today, had never placed higher than third at the USA Championship. He finished with a winning time of 2:26:34.

“Finally,” said Middaugh, who resides in Eagle-Vail, Colorado. “More relief than anything. This is a really special win for me to pull this off for the first time.”

He did it in impressive fashion, finishing nearly two minutes ahead of runner-up Ben Allen of Australia. Middaugh’s lead was large enough for him to grab his two children in his arms just before he crossed the finish line. “It was just a special day for me,” he said. “I felt good, my training has been good for the last three months and it showed today.”

Middaugh is regarded as one of the fastest runners on the XTERRA circuit, so when he took the lead midway through the bike course, it was a matter of him staying upright the rest of the way.

“I caught the leaders early, about mile 6 or 7,” he said. “That first downhill Conrad (Stoltz) got back ahead of me, and it wasn’t until about mile 9 that I passed him again for the second time. But I was so tentative on the downhill, I was just so worried about flatting, or having something ruining a good performance. I knew my fitness was good, I just had to be careful everywhere. I was a little bit too nervous, but it worked out.”

Allen placed second in 2:28:46 for his best showing at the USA Championship. He was the first out of the swim, and stayed with the lead pack throughout the bike.

“On the bike, I just tried to stay in a nice rhythm,” Allen said. “Last year, that’s sort of where I lost it, so I was really determined to bounce back from last year and have a strong ride.”

Despite a crash on one of the downhills, Allen still managed to enter the run in third place, behind Middaugh and Stoltz.

“I caught Conrad (on the run) and I was trying to catch Josiah, but he was too strong today,” Allen said.

France’s Nico Lebrun, who won the XTERRA USA Championship race last year, also passed Stoltz during the run to take third place in 2:29:02.

“I felt more of the altitude, I don’t know why,” Lebrun said. “I was not feeling really good (on the bike) and then on the run I felt better again.”

Stoltz finished fourth (2:30:47), which was enough to edge Middaugh for the U.S. Series title. If Stoltz had placed fifth, Middaugh would have won the series.

“I’ve been racing XTERRA for 12 years now, so being able to win 10 series titles means a lot to me. It’s been an amazing journey.”

Middaugh entered the race with a full beard on his face – part of his strategy a few months ago to stop shaving until he won a race (he shaved immediately after the race). It prompted Stoltz to say: “All I can say is I think I’m going to grow a beard for Maui.”

The XTERRA World Championship will take place at Kapalua, Maui, next month.

WOMEN’S RACE

Paterson’s performance continued an amazing run over the past 11 months. In that span, she has won the 2011 XTERRA World Championship, the 2012 ITU Cross Tri World Championship, and now the 2012 XTERRA USA Championship.

“It was awesome,” said Paterson, 31. “I did a lot of prep for this – came out 10 days early. It’s the first time in an XTERRA race that I went into the lead on the bike and held it. So I went into the run actually in the lead, which is very unusual for me, so I think my bike is finally coming together.”

Paterson had finished second at the USA Championship in 2011 and 2010, and third in 2009. She is considered the fastest female runner in XTERRA races, so it was all but over when she completed the bike course with the lead.

Paterson said she passed Melanie McQuaid for the lead on one of the steep bike climbs and and stayed in front the rest of the way. She then started the run with a cautious confidence.

“You’re always a bit nervous,” Paterson said. “Even though I’m a runner and I’ve got that pedigree, you still think ‘oh my gosh, did I push it too hard on the bike.’ ”

She did not relent during the run, and finished with a time of 2:49:09 – more than three minutes ahead of Suzie Snyder of Virginia (2:52:43).

It was also a breakthrough performance for Snyder, who had previously won an age-group amateur title at the USA Championship, but had never finished higher than ninth as a professional in this event.  She came two weeks early and stayed with a local family to help acclimate for the race.

“It was definitely the best race of my life,” Snyder said. “Everything was cramping and it hurt worse than any race I’ve ever had, but I’m so happy, I don’t care.”

Snyder completed the bike in third place, but passed McQuaid for second early in the run.

Danelle Kabush from Canada had a strong run and finished third in 2:52:56. She also placed third last year.

“I’m definitely satisfied,” she said. “Second would have been better, but I’ll take third. This was a good test of fitness.”

McQuaid, last year’s winner of this event, was fourth in 2:54:56. Renata Bucher from Switzerland was fifth in 2:56:10.

PRO MEN 
Pl Name Age Hometown Time Purse
1 Josiah Middaugh 34 Vail, Colorado 2:26:57 $2,500
2 Ben Allen 27 North Wollongong, Australia 2:28:46 $2,000
3 Nicolas Lebrun 39 Digne-les-Bains, France 2:29:02 $1,500
4 Conrad Stoltz 38 Stellenbosch, South Africa 2:30:47 $1,200
5 Branden Rakita 31 Colorado Springs, Colorado 2:34:01 $900
6 David Henestrosa 35 Manresa, Spain 2:35:24 $700
7 Will Kelsay 30 Boulder, Colorado 2:36:29 $500
8 Ryan Ignatz 33 Boulder, Colorado 2:36:44 $350
9 Cody Waite 33 Lakewood, Colorado 2:36:49 $200
10 Sam Gardner 37 Surrey, Great Britain 2:40:05 $150
Also: Adam Wirth (41), Will Ross (37), Craig Evans (34), Damian Gonzalez (31), Scott Gall (28), Denis Giovannetti, Simone Calamai
PRO WOMEN
Pl Name Age Hometown Time Purse
1 Lesley Paterson 31 San Diego, California (Scotland) 2:49:09 $2,500
2 Suzie Snyder 29 Fredericksburg, Virginia 2:52:43 $2,000
3 Danelle Kabush 36 Calgary, Alberta, Canada 2:52:56 $1,500
4 Melanie McQuaid 38 Victoria, B.C., Canada 2:54:56 $1,200
5 Renata Bucher 34 Lucerne, Switzerland 2:56:10 $900
6 Christine Jeffrey 39 Guelph, Ontario, Canada 3:01:03 $700
7 Jacqui Slack 29 Stoke-on-Trent, Great Britain 3:03:01 $500
8 Carina Wasle 28 Kundl, Austria 3:09:33 $350
9 Kim Baugh 32 Colorado Springs, Colorado 3:09:55 $200
10 Tamara Donelson 36 Edwards, Colorado 3:11:08 $150
Also: Heather Holmes (41), Caroline Colonna (37)

STOLTZ, PATERSON WIN XTERRA U.S. PRO SERIES TITLES

Conrad Stoltz fourth-place finish was just enough to hold off Middaugh and win his unprecedented 10th XTERRA U.S. Pro Series crown while Lesley Paterson captured her first.  Craig Evans and David Henestrosa tied for third in points but Henestrosa took third-place money due to the tie-breaker (best showing at this race).  The same happened in the women’s field, with Melanie McQuaid and Renata Bucher tying for 2nd, but McQuaid finisher just ahead of the Swiss Miss today.  Here’s a look at the final standings…

2012 XTERRA U.S. Pro Series Standings (Final – 9.22.12)
PRO MEN 
Pl Name West S’East East Mtn USA Totals
1 Conrad Stoltz, RSA 100 100 100 d100 75 375
2 Josiah Middaugh, USA 90 d75 90 90 100 370
3 David Henestrosa, ESP 63 d53 63 75 63 264
4 Craig Evans, USA 58 90 82 d37 34 264
5 Branden Rakita, USA 69 d49 69 53 69 260
6 Will Kelsay, USA DNS 63 75 45 58 241
7 Cody Waite, USA d37 45 53 69 49 216
8 Adam Wirth, USA 41 DNF 49 34 41 165
9 Will Ross, USA 45 37 41 DNS 37 160
10 Chris Legh, AUS 75 82 DNS DNS DNF 157

 

PRO WOMEN
Pl Name West S’East East Mtn USA Totals
1 Lesley Paterson, GBR 90 100 82 DNS 100 372
2 Melanie McQuaid, CAN d69 90 100 69 75 334
3 Renata Bucher, SUI 100 d45 90 75 69 334
4 Danelle Kabush, CAN 75 d63 69 100 82 326
5 Suzie Snyder, USA d63 75 63 82 90 310
6 Tamara Donelson, USA 41 DNP 45 63 45 194
7 Heather Holmes, USA DNS 34 58 58 41 191
8 Sara Tarkington, USA 49 37 DNS 90 DNS 176
9 Caroline Colonna, USA DNF 28 49 49 37 163
10 Shonny Vanlandingham, USA DNS 69 75 DNS DNF 144

Complete Standings

Summer Trail Closures and Event Cancellations

We are excited to see so many people enjoying the trails at Snowbasin this summer! Please note that due to safety reasons, there are a couple trail closures due to events on the mountain. Thank you for your cooperation!

Saturday, July 21st- Snowbasin mountain operations will close at 4 pm for the Jazz in July concert.

Saturday, July 21st- Snowbasin “will not” be offering its Mountain Top Dining.

Sunday, July 22nd- Live Entertainment and BBQ are cancelled due to to an event.

Saturday, August 4th- Trails closed until 1 pm for the Intermountain Cup. Shuttle service will be running that day for scheduled pick-ups after 1pm.

Saturday, August 18th- Mt. Ogden50/100k at Snowbasin – All trails will be closed for the race. No bike shuttle service.

Saturday, August 18th- Snowbasin “will not” be offering its Mountain Top Dining.

Saturday/Sunday, September 22/23rd – XTERRA USA Championships – All trails will be closed for the race. No bike shuttle service.

2012 Xterra USA Championships Sept 22nd

The XTERRA USA Championship is the culmination of a series of more than 50 qualifying events across the US that award points to the top athletes in XTERRA’s eight regions. The USA Championship is held in conjunction with the Harvest Moon Festival.

 Pro athletes race for their share of the $80,000 prize purse. $60,000 for the XTERRA America Tour Championship, and $20,000 goes to the fastest pros at nationals.

 

GOAL FoundationIn addition to the championship, XTERRA offers races for trail runners, as well as the XTERRA Utah short and long course off-road triathlons. Pick up tips from the pros at one of our XTERRA University clinics or enjoy the XTERRA Expo. Kids can get into the fun at the XTERRA Kids Zone.

 

The XTERRA USA Championship is open to pros and qualified amateur athletes from the US. Here is how to qualify. Non-qualified athletes can race on our championship course by signing up for the XTERRA Utah long course off-road tri, which is open to everyone, or the short course which is half the distance.

 

Top finishers in each age division are awarded a coveted slot to the XTERRA World Championship on Maui where 550 of the world’s best competitors vie for the world championship title. Also, the fastest age group male and female swimmer timed from start to exit of T1 receive a XTERRA Vortex 3 Full wetsuit. Note: You must be present to receive your award. Awards will not be mailed after the event.

 

Pro athletes from the US with a valid pro license can compete for the USA Championship title. International athletes may compete for prize money, but are not eligible for the USA Championship title. Visit the pro racing for more information.

 

Historic 25th Street, Ogden, UtahIn Association with the Harvest Moon Festival

XTERRA and the annual Harvest Moon Festival on Ogden’s Historic 25th Street team up to bring you one great weekend of family events. Whether you volunteer, participate or just spectate, there is truly something for everyone young and old.

Xterra Nationals “New” Course Details

 

NEW USA CHAMPIONSHIP COURSE “ROCKS,” ADDS SINGLETRACK AND STUNNING VIEWS

The U.S. Forest Service started work on the Sardine Peak Trail near Snowbasin Resort three years ago and for the first-time in XTERRA racing history, it is ready to ride. The new 7+ mile section of single and double track is the sweetest and smoothest piece of trail on the mountain, and makes the bike course “a true mountain race course that weaves in-and-out of aspen glades and pines,” said Snowbasin Resort sport event operations director Steve Andrus.

XTERRA USA Championship Course Quick Stats:

Swim course distance: 1,500-meters (0.93 miles) Combines two 750-meter laps (no run in-between)
Elevation at Port Ramp Marina for swim start: 4,900-feet
Water temperature: TBA, expected to be in the 65-degree range
Mountain bike course distance: 28-kilometers (17.7 miles)
Total climbing on bike: 3,400-feet
Elevation at highest point: 7,300-feet (top of Sardine Peak Trail)
Elevation at T2/Snowbasin Resort Lodge: 6,400-feet
Trail Run course distance: 9.8-kilometers (6.1 miles)
Total climbing on run: 700-feet
Total climbing on course: 4,100-feet

For the full tour, let’s start from the beginning when the cannon blast at 9am on September 24, 2011 signals the start of the 11th annual invite-only XTERRA USA Championship race.

More than 300 professional and amateur racers from more than 40 states will take off from Port Ramp Marina all-at-once for a 1500-meter swim (two 750-meter laps) in Pineview Reservoir, where water temps hover near the “wetsuit-required” range (Competitor note: a final determination on if this will be a wetsuit legal or optional swim will not be made until the water temperature is read on race morning, so be prepared).

Swim Prime Alert: The top amateur male and female, timed from swim start to the exit of T1, will win a XTERRA Vortex 3 Full wetsuit.

Once on the bike racers leave the swim-to-bike transition (T1) and head west towards the Wheeler Canyon trail head for the 28K mountain bike section. (Competitor note: The first 1.5 miles is on Highway 158, a major road. Ride on the shoulder inside the delineators that will be placed to separate racers from traffic.  The Utah Department of Transportation has said we cannot ride in the traffic lanes.  Stay inside the delineators.  We will assess a minimum of a two-minute penalty to riders caught outside of the lane delineators, and should the police handling traffic stop you, your race is done. When pre-riding we encourage you to park and start at Wheeler Canyon trail head (or park at Snowbasin and coast down to trailhead) because parking is not permitted at Port Ramp Marina.

OK, now to the fun part. For those that have raced the USA Championship in either of the last two years, the first 10-miles through the Wheeler Creek trail are the same. It starts with mild, steady climbs on dirt, rock, and root-ridden mountain trails that climb through the magnificent Wheeler slot canyon. The trail pops out at the Art Nord trail head where riders cross old Snowbasin road and climb up the East Fork trail, then drop down into some speedy descents to the Middle Fork trail, go across old Snowbasin road one more time and connect with the Wheeler Creek Trail. Single track dominates this 10-mile stretch and elevation gains from the water at 4,900-feet to about 7,000-feet before a descent on Middle Fork trail shoots you back down.

The new section starts where the Wheeler Creek Trail meets the Sardine Peak trail. Here riders are in for some more climbing that will take them to the ridgeline, rewarding their efforts with spectacular views of Pineview Reservoir to the right, and Snowbasin to the left.

Amateur video shot on Sardine Peak trail (reverse direction from how it will be raced)

“It certainly has that ‘wow’ factor, especially with the switchbacks that twist and turn through the fall colors,” said Andrus. “It’s a sensory riot.”

“The new section of the course is so sweet, a constant smooth climb and wide enough to pass,” added local age-group phenom Nick Fisher.

More wide-open vistas of Ogden Canyon lay ahead before the downhill onto Maples trail speeds riders through a meadow filled with wildflowers and back to the bike-to-run transition at the Snowbasin lodge area where spectators will have the chance to see their friends and family coming in.

On to the trail run, the 6.1-mile trail run is pure singletrack minus a wide section coming out of transition that takes runners to the start of Green Pond trail. The 10K single-loop run zigzags its way through aspen groves and fields of wildflowers. There are a few short, very steep uphill’s and about 700-feet of climbing then descending before the jubilation of finishing in front of loads of spectators, cameramen, and a live band jamming away right on the bricks of the fabulous Snowbasin Resort.

(Competitor Note: Headphones, headsets, earbuds, walkmans, iPods, mp3 players or any personal audio device are not to be carried or worn at any time during the race. Bike or run.  Variable time penalty for infraction).

XTERRA UTAH LONG COURSE: Starts at 9:20 a.m. and is identical to USA Championship course described above

XTERRA UTAH SHORT COURSE: Starts at 9:40 a.m. Same course as past years. The swim is half-distance, one 750-meter loop. The bike is 19K with roughly 2,300-feet of climbing (it turns back to Snowbasin Resort at end of Wheeler Creek trail instead of heading up Sardine Peak trail). The run is 5K, and cuts off midway through Green Pond trail.