As the culmination of 30 qualifying events held around the globe “Worlds” is one massive celebration for those who perpetuate the healthy, active, and adventurous Live More lifestyle.
It’s a 1.5km swim, 32km mountain bike, and 10.5km trail run, and while the distances stay basically the same year-after-year, the conditions never are. That’s the beauty of off-road racing, the perpetually evolving challenge of racing against the unknown.
Will northwest swells bring shore-pounding waves? Will recent rains make the bike course a muddy mess or two weeks of dry days turn it into a dusty bowl? Will the Maui heat make it a suffer-fest for all?
We’ll find out four Sunday’s from now but one thing is certain, in XTERRA it’s you vs. Mother Nature … and she is unstoppable, unbeatable, and unbreakable.
More than 70 of the fastest XTERRA racers on earth are confirmed for the $100,000 showdown in Maui.
FLORA FOR A THREE-PEAT?
When we talk about the best in the world, we’re not kidding, just look at the women’s field.
Flora Duffy, the reigning and two-time XTERRA World Champion, just beat Olympic gold-medalist Gwen Jorgensen on her way to capturing the ITU World Triathlon Series Championship.
Barbara Riveros, a two-time runner-up in Maui, finished 5th at the Rio Olympics ahead of Duffy. And Lesley Paterson, a two-time World Champ herself, could just be the grittiest triathlete on the planet.
“Those three women have taken the elite women’s field to a whole new level these past few years,” said XTERRA World Tour managing director Dave Nicholas. “They’re not just fast, they’re fearless and they’re fighters.”
Seven of the top eight women from last year’s XTERRA World Championship are back in Maui, excluding only Emma Garrard (3rd last year) who is pregnant with her second child.
Myriam Guillot-Boisset, an adventure racing world champ, was fourth last year in Maui and took home two majors this year. Lizzie Orchard, who was 5th last year, won three races and the XTERRA Asia-Pacific Tour title this year.
Helena Erbenova won five races on the XTERRA European Tour this season and Michelle Flipo won the big ones at XTERRA Switzerland and the XTERRA European Championship in Germany.
Suzie Snyder dominated the XTERRA Pan America Tour with five wins, Carina Wasle added the XTERRA La Reunion title to her trophy shelf, Jacqui Slack won in Malaysia, and Julie Baker pulled out a win in her rookie pro season at XTERRA Beaver Creek.
2016 XTERRA Worlds Elite Women
Tentative as of 9.30.16
Sorted by bib #, based on finishing position in last year’s WC then alpha
Bib (2015 Pos) – Name (NAT)
61 (1) – Flora Duffy (BER)
62 (2) – Lesley Paterson (GBR)
63 (4) – Myriam Guillot-Boisset (FRA)
64 (5) – Lizzie Orchard (NZL)
65 (6) – Carina Wasle (AUT)
66 (7) – Helena Erbenova (CZE)
67 (8) – Jacqui Slack (GBR)
68 (12) – Maia Ignatz (USA)
69 (13) – Kara LaPoint (USA)
70 – Julie Baker (USA)
71 – Mieko Carey (JPN)
72 – Katharine Carter (CAN)
73 – Caroline Colonna (USA)
74 – Michelle Flipo (MEX)
75 – Melania Giraldi (BRA)
76 – Sarah Graves (USA)
77 – Isabella Ribeiro (BRA)
78 – Morgane Riou (FRA)
79 – Barbara Riveros (CHI)
80 – Suzie Snyder (USA)
81 – Jennifer Todd (USA)
82 – Joanna Brown (CAN)
XTERRA will cover the elite race with live streaming video online, on Facebook, and on twitter starting at 9 a.m. on October 23, 2016.
We are wishing Freeplay writer, Kara LaPoint, the best of luck as she takes on the best in the World!
Read our Kona Countdown Q&As here.