At the fourth stop on the XTERRA Pan Am Tour, Americans Suzie Snyder and Josiah Middaugh took the top spots on the podium. XTERRA Oak Mountain is touted as one of the most challenging and fun courses in North American and the action there today was no disappointment.
The Men’s Race
Mexican superstar Mauricio Mendez led out of the water nearly 45 seconds in front of a chase pack of three comprised of Canadian Karsten Madsen, Mitchman Braden Rakita, and Ian King. Reigning world champion Josiah Middaugh was nearly three minutes back from Mendez, but used the fastest bike split of the day to move into 1st position after the 32k mountain bike.
Coming into T2, Middaugh had not only caught Mendez, but put 47 seconds into him. Madsen was still near the front with Rakita not far behind as they dismounted and took off on the 9.6km run in 3rd and 4th place. Chris Ganter entered T2 in 5th followed by Kieran McPherson.
On the 2 loop run, Mendez reeled in Middaugh, but despite out splitting him by 40 seconds, the lead the Middaugh had established on the bike proved to be to great for Mendez to overcome. Middaugh took the win just 11 seconds in front of Mendez. Madsen and Rakita held their same positions throughout the run and crossed the line in the same positions they had left T2 – 3rd and 4th respectively. McPherson used a peppy run split to pass Ganter and nearly catch up to Rakita, but simply ran out of real estate to do so. He took the 5th place spot just 14 seconds behind Rakita.
- Josiah Middaugh 02:19:17
- Mauricio Mendez 02:19:28
- Karsten Madsen 02:23:49
- Branden Rakita 02:25:20
- Kieran McPherson 02:25:34
The Women’s Race
The women’s race was a bit more clear cut than the men’s. Suzie Snyder, of the Sierra Endurance Sports Team from Reno, Nevada, came out of the water with men’s winner Josiah Middaugh, nearly 4 minutes in front of her teammate Kara LaPoint.
On the bike, Snyder continued to open up the gap on the other women as she threw down the fastest female bike split. Maia Ignatz of Boulder, CO gained on LaPoint on the bike, but was still 17 seconds down coming into T2.
Ignatz out ran the other women by a big margin (over 3 minutes), and was able to pass LaPoint to move into 2nd position. But Snyder’s lead from the swim and bike proved to be to great for the quick feet of Ignatz and she crossed the line in 2nd.
- Suzie Snyder 02:43:57
- Maia Ignatz 02:48:12
- Kara LaPoint 02:51:25
Check back soon for full results and a complete report of the weekend.