Heather Pady claimed her third Canadian Cross Triathlon National Championship in a row at the XTERRA Mine Over Matter while Karsten Madsen satisfyingly picked up his first Championship after two years of runner up status.
This year the crew at Element Racing created a new bike course for Canada’s largest cross triathlon. The new course introduced multiple shorter loops for improved spectating and visibility, as well as a mix of single and double track segments to increase passing opportunities, while maintaining several steep technical climbs and descents for an exciting and fun course.
Both Champions started off with strong swims. Madsen lead the men out of the water while Pady emerged second in the women’s group. Onto the bike and run their similarities continued. Madsen put up a very strong 48:56 bike split over the 21ks and opened a gap of six minutes over eventual second place and two time defending champion, Sean Bechtel. With little challenge on the run Madsen could have cruised it in, but instead knocked out the races fastest run split by 1:14, over third place Alexander Vanderlinden, with a 36:39 for the 9.8ks.
Pady on the other hand gained the lead on the bike producing a 1:04.52, only 1 second slower than eventual second place Katherine Wilson. But, Pady was strong on the run producing a race leading 42:08 over 9.8k which was 1:28 faster than Wilson.
XTERRA Mine Over Matter Canadian Cross Triathlon National Championship
Milton, ON, Canada
June 27th, 2015
1k Swim/21k MTB/9.8k Run
1. Heather PADY 00:17:50 01:04:52 00:42:08 02:07:07.9
2. Katherine WILSON 00:18:03 01:04:51 00:43:36 02:09:12.1
3. Molly HURFORD 00:20:07 01:07:13 00:45:24 02:15:29.9
4. Carolyn SMITH 00:16:42 01:07:23 00:51:39 02:17:56.7
5. Caitlin FOISY 00:19:14 01:13:22 00:50:21 02:25:51.5
6. Julia TOTOSY 00:22:00 01:09:22 00:52:23 02:27:36.0
7. Victoria SMITH 00:22:31 01:10:35 00:51:09 02:27:36.0
8. Athena THOMASVISEL 00:21:59 01:08:14 00:54:05 02:28:18.2
9. Kate RAGOTTE 00:19:30 01:11:31 00:54:47 02:29:38.0
10. Susan HAUSFELD MOOTE 00:17:59 01:11:05 00:58:15 02:30:35.4
1. Karsten MADSEN 00:13:30 00:48:56 00:36:39 01:40:17.1
2. Sean BECHTEL 00:13:33 00:55:18 00:39:22 01:49:19.4
3. Alexander VANDERLINDEN 00:13:59 00:57:05 00:37:53 01:50:15.6
4. Richard PADY 00:14:38 00:55:19 00:38:29 01:50:16.1
5. Brad REITER 00:17:00 01:00:03 00:41:50 02:00:48.8
6. Nathan STEWART 00:18:00 00:56:47 00:44:13 02:01:24.5
7. Kevin FORNERIS 00:16:13 01:00:34 00:42:05 02:01:29.9
8. Patryk BIEGALSKI 00:17:43 01:00:54 00:41:38 02:01:48.3
9. William LOGIE 00:18:11 00:58:07 00:42:23 02:02:00.4
10. Ryan TRANT 00:18:16 01:00:20 00:42:12 02:02:43.9
While the men’s race featured the third year of an annual battle between the top two, and head to head battles throughout the top ten, there were several conspicuous absences on the women’s side. Canada is quite deep in talent within women’s cross triathlon, yet prominent names like Chantell Widney, Katie Button, Danelle Kabush, Christine Jeffrey, and Melanie McQuaid did not start their National Championship. Why?
The most obvious answer would be, there doesn’t appear to be any prize money in the race. But, we would hope athletes would recognize value to sponsors, possible bonuses, and obvious bragging rights in earning one’s National Championship. However, the concept of prize money is a discussion for another time.
One plausible explanation could be the fact that Triathlon Canada does not require professionals to compete in the Canadian Cross Triathlon National Championship in order to qualify for the ITU Cross Triathlon World Championship (or give them any aid to get to the Worlds for that matter), as stated below from the Triathlon Canada website:
“Long Distance, Duathlon & Cross Team
In 2007, to recognize Canada’s top Elite Long Distance and Duathlon athletes, Triathlon Canada developed an annual program to support those athletes who will compete at the ITU World Championships in their respective disciplines.
The annual Senior Long Distance and Duathlon World Championships Teams receive funding assistance and are eligible for a bonus pool based on their performance at World Championships.
For more information on the Senior Elite Long Distance, Cross and Duathlon World Championships Teams, please contact the Programs Coordinator”
Triathlon Canada’s indifference toward Cross Triathlon ultimately has a negative trickle down effect for the growth of Cross Triathlon both in Canada and abroad, the race organizer, and the athletes.
With no incentive or requirement to compete, professional athletes have little motivation to participate in their own National Championship, a race where one would hope to see both established off road pros as well as curious roadies toe the line for a shot at qualifying for the World Championship team. This also hurts the race organizer, Element Racing, since they aren’t seeing the attendance of the marquee athletes expected at a National Championship event and thus the associated marketing and promotional opportunities for their event.
We at DirtTRI are not trying to beat up on Triathlon Canada. However, this is the challenge off-road multisport faces with several National governing bodies as well as the ITU. Although off-road triathlon is a well established format which has held World Championships and seen international success for over twenty years, and has a very large and growing participation base, we are still fighting for relevance within our own governing bodies. Heck, Triathlon Canada didn’t even acknowledge the race took place on their own website.
This is one of the primary reasons why DirtTRI.com was created. We aim to aggressively fight for off-road’s place in triathlon and endurance sport.
XTERRA Mine Over Matter was an exciting event and a quality National Championship. The organizers put a lot of time and effort into creating an event which didn’t get nearly the attention it should have.
So, congratulations to Element Racing on a job well done. However, Triathlon Canada needs to wake up, acknowledge they are one of the strongest countries in the world within cross triathlon and start giving their off road athletes the attention the deserve.