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The ETU Relives Ibiza Cross Triathlon Championship

DIRT TRI 5 days 27 min ago
A Look Back to the European Cross-Triathlon Championship

By Paul Groves via ETU

We saw strong performances from the U23 athletes when they had the chance to race against the Elite in the Cross-Duathlon and once again, in the women’s race, it was to be that a younger athlete would push the elite all the way to the line.

Victory went ultimately to Great Britain’s Nicole Walters the runner-up in Fyn.

The Women’s Race

Walters is well-known on the Xterra circuit and was guide to PTVI athlete Melissa Reid in Rio, making it to the podium and collecting the Paralympic bronze medal. With her swim power now able to work to her advantage, she was no doubt confident that her 6th place in the Cross-Duathlon would be improved upon.

A breakaway of four athletes; two elite, two U23, was led by Ukraine’s Sofiya Pryyma and Antoanela Manac ROU, who first got a taste of off-road racing last year on home soil in Târgu Mureș. The two U23 athletes were followed by Laura Gómez Ramón and Walters.

With Manac usually racing the “on-road” circuit and with limited time to train off-road, she was soon dropped and Walters, applying the pressure, simply pulled away with only Gómez able to keep her in sight.

Having finished her race day for the duathlon in pretty low spirits, “Some days you just have to suck it up at the back of the race. This is me absolutely hating life in the duathlon…. Massive thanks to all the GB support out on the course, not sure I’d have finished if it wasn’t for all the encouragement!! No time to dwell, less than 48 hours to recover and for my legs to not be sh#t. Roll on the triathlon.” Her words were clear enough after her victory, “Can’t quite believe it. European cross triathlon champion!!”

Her victory, by almost three minutes, was a clear statement and finishes a pretty good year, with the silver in Fyn and a number of other top finishes on other circuits. Silver medal-winner Gómez gave her all to claim the second place on the podium, “Y cuando das todo no hay nada que pedir … Pero al final quien lo diria unos meses atrás, así que contentisima por el resultado y lo vivido. Aprendiendo constantemente. And when you give everything and there is nothing more to give …. But in the end, who would have believed it a few months ago, so I am extremely happy with the result and loved every minute. Learning constantly.”

For Pryyma, she has once again shown her power. Coming to the race after the oven-like temperatures in Eilat only the weekend before, her determined attack at the start, and solid bike leg, was finished with an impressive final run to take her onto the podium, claiming bronze but also winning  the U23 title ahead of Manac and Russia’s Daria Rogozina.

With the blinding sunshine of Eilat and the rain-swept, then sun-drenched courses in Ibiza a fond memory, Pryyma is now training in the winter wonderland of Ukraine in preparation for 2019.

The Men’s Race

The men’s race was in some ways a copy of the women’s with U23 athletes featuring in the top-end racing. Coming to the start line with the Cross-Duathlon title already claimed, Belgium’s Tim Van Hemel was up against some of the best off-road specialists in the world. Against all odds, he was able to “do the double” with once again absolutely breath–taking riding off road.

He came out of the water some considerable way down the pack and with Brice Daubord almost 30 seconds ahead, there must have been some small concerns at the back of his mind. Overtaking the Frenchman out on the bike course was just the signal that Van Hemel needed and coming into T2 with over 30 seconds in the bag, his final run was enough to secure both off-road titles.

Daubord’s blisteringly fast final run was simply not enough to catch his northern neighbour but was enough to keep him ahead of the young pretender from Italy, the world U23 champion, Marcello Ugazio whose bronze medal and victory in the U23 category has clearly signalled to everyone that he has great potential.

U23 and Juniors

In the U23 category, it was a glory day for Italy, with Tommaso Gatti winning silver ahead of the swim leader, Kevin Tarek Viñuela González.

Amongst the Juniors, we were treated once again to a running masterclass by Italy’s Marta Menditto. Having lost out in Târgu Mureș last year, where she comfortably won the Cross-Duathlon but lost out in the Cross-Triathlon against the stronger swimming of Pryyma, she has clearly been working on her swimming and with two world junior bronze medals, she could come to Ibiza knowing that the balance would be in her favour. Having won silver in the Cross-Duathlon only a couple of days earlier, she knew that her bike to run would be good. Losing only a few seconds in the swim, she was soon able to catch up and, with her explosive final run power, the title was pretty much hers as she entered T2.

Reigning world champion, Pavlína Vargová CZE was the main threat in her final year as a junior but it was out on the run course that Menditto took command. A silver to the Czech athlete ahead of the swim leader, Lýdia Drahovská.

For the Junior Men, the anticipation was that Spanish athlete, Nicolás Puertas Fernández could claim both titles after his convincing victory in the cross-duathlon.

The swim was dominated by Croatia’s Luka Grgorinić but the rocky terrain soon slowed him down and he could do nothing to prevent the off-road powerhouse riders from taking the advantage. With Italy’s Filippo Pradella edging ahead on the bike, it was down to the run power of Puertas to seal the victory. He did just that with a stunning 14:15 to close the race down. Pradella came home for silver but it was a nail-biting final few metres that decided bronze. Spain’s Alfonso Izquierdo, making his international debut, as almost caught out by fast-finishing Petr Velíšek. His silver in the Cross-Duathlon had shown us his pace but it was just not quite enough to catch the Spaniard and he lost out on a podium place by just one, small second.

For Puertas, “Ni en el mejor de los sueños conseguía una medalla en un Campeonato de Europa. Fue una gran sorpresa el rendimiento en cada competición. Fui a disfrutar y disfruté a lo grande. Never in my wildest dreams did I think that I could win a medal at the European Championships. It was a great surprise for me, my performance in each race. I went to enjoy and enjoyed it more than I could ever possibly imagine.”

Para-Tri Championship

Three categories were represented in the Para-Tri Championships. The medals were shared between Spain and Italy, with the host nation taking the lion’s share. When you look at the degree of difficulty out on the bike and run courses; a mixture of rocks and sand, the performances really are put into perspective.

In the PTS2 Category, it was gold to Ricardo Marín Arcis to add to his title collection on the island.

PTS3 saw gold and silver going to Spain, with Raúl Zambrana Romero having greater control over the bike than runner-up Kini Carrasco who within days of the race was under the surgeon’s knife to sort out an Achilles problem.

The PTS4 category saw a full podium, with once again the host nation taking the title. Gold went to José Antonio Abril in his first race on the ETU / ITU circuit. He used his run power to absorb any weaknesses in the swim and bike but in this pretty evenly-matched race, he delivered excellent swim and bike legs, before racing away on the final segment to finish ahead of Italy’s Gianfilippo Mirabile, who goes away from the island with two silver medals from the off-road events. Bronze went to Francisco José López Salar to match his medal in the Cross-Duathlon.

Check out the album here.

Results: 2018 Ibiza ETU Cross Triathlon European Championships

21 – Oct, 2018 • event page • all results

Results: Elite Men1.Tim Van HemelBEL01:19:392.Brice DaubordFRA01:20:193.Marcello UgazioITA01:20:374.Filippo RinaldiITA01:21:095.Arthur SerrieresFRA01:21:176.Tommaso GattiITA01:21:527.Rui DoloresPOR01:22:088.Kevin Tarek Viñuela GonzalezESP01:22:399.Jens RothGER01:23:1710.Corentin DuclosFRA01:24:07 Results: Elite Women1.Nicole WaltersGBR01:33:502.Laura Gomez RamonESP01:36:493.Sofiya PryymaUKR01:36:524.Sandra MairhoferITA01:38:485.Eleonora PeronciniITA01:39:176.Bianca MorvilloITA01:40:467.Ladina BussSUI01:41:118.Kristina LapinovaSVK01:42:149.Antoanela ManacROU01:42:2210.Daria RogozinaRUS01:42:52 Results: U23 Men1.Marcello UgazioITA01:20:372.Tommaso GattiITA01:21:523.Kevin Tarek Viñuela GonzalezESP01:22:394.Corentin DuclosFRA01:24:075.Matteo BozzatoITA01:26:126.Emanuele AruITA01:29:497.Brian TetardFRA01:30:058.Ondrej PetiskaCZE01:30:229.Hugo BalugaPOR01:32:3110.Eugen PopovićCRO01:34:47 Results: U23 Women1.Sofiya PryymaUKR01:36:522.Antoanela ManacROU01:42:223.Daria RogozinaRUS01:42:524.Matilde BolzanITA01:43:305.Adriana KlimkovaCZE01:46:346.Dorina CrnčanCRO02:03:01 Results: Junior Men1.Nicolas Puertas FernandezESP00:47:002.Filippo PradellaITA00:47:313.Alfonso IzquierdoESP00:48:044.Petr VelisekCZE00:48:055.Leonardo PasquottoITA00:49:596.Luka GrgorinicCRO00:50:407.Francesco PoddaITA00:51:168.Dominik DańkowskiPOL00:51:179.Ruben SlotNED00:51:1910.Quirijn WaaijenbergNED00:52:42 Results: Junior Women1.Marta MendittoITA00:55:302.Pavlina VargovaCZE00:57:203.Lydia DrahovskaSVK00:59:054.Ines De PoorterFRA01:01:47

XTERRA Asia-Pacific Championship Heads to Taiwan

DIRT TRI 5 days 1 hour ago
Taiwan to Host XTERRA Asia-Pacific Championship

The 2019 XTERRA Asia-Pacific Championship off-road triathlon festival weekend is set for March 30-31, 2019 at Kenting National Park on the southern tip of Taiwan in Pingtung County.

Last year’s inaugural event in Kenting was honored as the “Best Off-Road Triathlon in Asia for 2018″ by correspondents, who added that last September’s race “lived up to the expectations of off-road triathletes”, and that Kenting National Park is an idyllic outdoor sports paradise.

The main event is Saturday, March 30, and boasts a $25,000 USD elite prize purse, 51 qualifying spots to XTERRA Worlds for amateur racers, and a 100-point scale scoring structure for both amateurs and elites vying for XTERRA Asia-Pacific Tour honors.

The race starts with a 1.5-kilometer swim at Little Bay Beach, follows with a 26-kilometer mountain bike that traverses coastal terrain to rocky riverbeds to uncharted territory high atop Menmalou mountain, and finishes with a 10-kilometer trail run through the “enchanted forest” of Chihniuling.

Other weekend events include the Xticer beginner distance off-road triathlon, trail runs, kids races, live music, local cuisine, cultural demonstrations, and entertainment to delight family, friends, spectators and racers alike.  All the action will unfold at the Kenting Youth Activity Center which showcases the area’s traditional Minnan style architecture.

What To Expect From Taiwan

“Following a successful debut race at Kenting in September, it was clear Taiwan could host a world-class event and provide a magnificent experience for competitors,” said XTERRA President, Janet Clark. “I was impressed with their attention to detail, from the unique cultural experiences like the local song and dance performance at the start of the race to the 750-meters of red carpet they laid down from the beach to transition. Plus, getting in-and-out of Kaoshiung International Airport is a breeze, the fresh seafood is fabulous, the locals are warm and welcoming, and so is the weather and the water.”

Lewis Ryan, who won the inaugural men’s elite race at XTERRA Taiwan, is quick to agree.

The landscape is mesmerizing, the atmosphere is beyond words, and as far as race courses go, it’s got to be one of the best, if not the best in the world. 

Lewis Ryan -2018 XTERRA Taiwan Champion

“I think I can speak on behalf of everyone who participated in 2018 when I say this is an incredible event and should be on everyone’s bucket list,” said Ryan, who will return to Kenting in March.  “The landscape is mesmerizing, the atmosphere is beyond words, and as far as race courses go, it’s got to be one of the best, if not the best in the world. The place feels so untouched you wouldn’t be surprised if a dinosaur was waiting around the next corner.”

The sixth annual XTERRA Asia-Pacific Championship in Taiwan is the first of five majors on the 2019 XTERRA Asia-Pacific Tour that also includes stops in Rotorua, New Zealand (April 6), Moorea, Tahiti (May 31), Marunuma, Japan (Sept. 15), and culminates at the inaugural XTERRA China off-road triathlon in Kunming on September 21.

Registration and more information about the XTERRA Asia-Pacific Championship and XTERRA Asia-Pacific Tour rules for amateurs and elites can be found online at

How to train with a pull buoy

Triathlon Magazine Canada 5 days 4 hours ago

— by Lauren Brandon

There is always a lot of chatter about whether or not using a pull buoy is good or not for triathletes. Some people say that too many people use it as a crutch instead of a tool and therefore should be limited, while other people say that you should use it as much as you want because it helps with body position. I definitely fall somewhere in the middle of this debate.

Related: Training with a pull buoy reaps rewards

There is a time and a place for a pull buoy and paddles to be used and it certainly isn’t every day. I see too many triathletes put on a pull buoy and paddles so that they can make a certain pace time or because they are tired and don’t feel like doing the set just freestyle. Sorry to say, but if you’re putting on a buoy and paddles just so that you can say you made a faster pace time, then you are not using it for the right reason.

How to implement the pull buoy into your workouts

A buoy and paddles should be used to help build strength in your stroke and it can give people the feeling of having their hips higher in the water, just as a wetsuit would. Pull sets should definitely be implemented into your weekly swim plan, but make sure it’s for a purpose and not just to make you go faster or to use less effort.

Warm up:

  • 6 x 100 (50 swim/50 kick) – rest 10 seconds in between each

Main Set: *All of the pull is at threshold pace – hard but a pace that you can keep as the distances get longer.

  • 100 pull
  • 3x 50 free swim descend 1-3 (easy, moderate, fast) 10 seconds rest in between each
  • 200 pull
  • 3×50 free swim descend 1-3 -10 seconds between each
  • 300 pull
  • 3×50  free swim descend 1-3. 10 seconds between each
  • 400 pull
  • 3×50 free swim descend 1-3. 10 seconds rest between each
  • 500 pull
  • 3×50 descent 1-3. 10 seconds rest between each


  • 250 easy

Total: 3100

The post How to train with a pull buoy appeared first on Triathlon Magazine Canada.

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