This weekend close to 1,500 competitors have taken on the fourth annual X-Adventure Dunsborough; Australia’s largest off-road triathlon set in South West, Western Australia.
X-Adventure is the ideal mix of triathlon and adventure racing; combining ocean swimming, trail running and mountain bike riding, with a race for everyone, including the premier 35.5km Long Course race, a half-distance 19km Short Course and two kids events.
Tom Chadbourne (North Fremantle, WA) and Ariarn Huston (Mosman Park, WA) overcame a field of nearly 400 racers today to claim victory in the X-Adventure premier Long Course race.
Light rain overnight didn’t perturb racers who were met with perfect calm water and optimal race conditions to tackle the 1500m Dunsborough Lakes ocean swim, 12km WATT Australia coast and trail run, and 22km of single track in Meelup Regional Park.
After taking a significant lead in the trail run leg, Chadbourne hit the gas as he navigated the challenging single-track course, ultimately coming out unscathed and making 2016 X-Adventure history as he took the overall win in just two hours, 24 minutes and four seconds over Mark Oakshott (2:36:13) and Bart Hollemans (2:37:48), who placed 2nd and 3rd respectively.
“I’ve got a bit of a habit of going a bit hard a bit early, so conditions were good for me today I think,” Chadbourne said.
“Once I got into the single-trail I had a few near-misses and decided to chill out a bit, and most probably went faster to be honest, but I settled down a bit and tried to just ride in control. I’m starting to learn you can go a little bit slower, and you end up going faster in the end.”
In the women’s X-Adventure Long Course Ariarn Huston was able to maintain her lead on the single-track to clinch overall victory over former elite mountain-bike racer Jodie Willett and 2015 runner-up Phip Hughes, in a time of two hours, 53 minutes and 16 seconds (to Willett’s 2:56:49 and Hughes’ 2:58:03).
“It was good to not get passed on the bike like normal. I really enjoyed the 2kms shaved off the ride,” Huston said jokingly.
“It was just a great day out, and a great job organising it, it’s always a good one.”
Sunday’s Long Course followed a packed day of competition on Saturday, which saw in excess of 1,000 racers line up to tackle the Short Course, Kids race and inaugural Groms event.
Winners in the Men’s Short Course were Steve York, Rowan Brown and Brad McFarland, and it was Waveney Eastaugh, Suzanne Borrett, and Anthea Brown who were crowned champions in the Women’s.
Samuel Van Rooyen placed 1st in the Kids’ X-Adventure, followed by Indiana Hill and Benjamin Taylor, whilst over in the girls it was Emma Stegmann who claimed the win, with Lauren Mellett and Stella Young crossing the line in 2nd and 3rd respectively.
The Groms X-Adventure; designed as a fun introduction to off-road adventure racing for Under nine-year-olds, was untimed and included an 800m run and 1.2km ride before running through the same finish chute as the adults.
Event Manager Sam Maffett thanked everyone who contributed to making the event the biggest and most successful yet, and congratulated all the competitors for taking on the X-Adventure challenge.
“It was just awesome, a great couple of days, with a really good family vibe. We were treated to beautiful weather, slightly overcast and not too hot; perfect racing conditions.”
For official results CLICK HERE.
CLICK HERE to see an album of photos from the event on Facebook.