Wasle, Ruzafa return to XTERRA Reunion Island

Thursday 13 April 2017
Three-time XTERRA World Champ Ruben Ruzafa from Spain starts his 2017 racing campaign this Sunday, April 16, at XTERRA Reunion.

“I’m starting my season here because the place, the race, the organization, and the people are just incredible,” said Ruzafa, who won last year’s race in two hours and 20 minutes, nearly five-minutes ahead of runner-up Francois Carloni. “I also wanted to come back so I could see more of this beautiful island.”

Ruzafa, who has won 23 of 29 XTERRA majors since his debut in 2008, has an ambitious 2017 schedule that includes XTERRA Greece, Spain, Portugal, Belgium, Switzerland, France, Norway, the XTERRA European Championship in Denmark, plus ITU Cross Tri Worlds in Canada and, of course, another shot at XTERRA Worlds in Maui.

“My off-season has been good. I have been at home with the family, and doing all those things that are difficult to do during the racing season,” said Ruzafa (check out his new website at rubenruzafa.com).   “Now I’m motivated for the season ahead, and think I have improved my skills.”

At each of the last two XTERRA World Championship races Ruzafa took the lead into the run.  In 2015, he was chased down by Josiah Middaugh and Braden Currie and last year he was caught by the young-gun Mauricio Mendez.

“I changed my preparation a little bit this off-season, with the goal to improve my running in XTERRA.  I did more trail run training and took part in trail running races to push my limits, with some falls included!  I also worked more on my swimming with Ainhoa Murua, who is helping me adapt my swim to the triathlon requirements.  I am happy with my progress, and if I can save some seconds in the swim I am going to feel better on the bike and run.”

Ruzafa says his main goals are XTERRA Worlds and ITU Cross Tri Worlds, and is happy to have the two races separated by two months “so we have more time to prepare for each one separately.”

“The most important thing for me this season,” Ruzafa added, “is to enjoy every race, every moment, all the travel and training, and to learn to be better at the end of the season races.”

His first test in Reunion on Sunday will be a good one, as a strong crop of challengers led by the 2015 XTERRA Reunion Champion Bradley Weiss, who finished second to Richard Murray at XTERRA South Africa and second to Sam Osborne at XTERRA Saipan so far this year.

“The men’s race has a very high plateau,” said race director, Yannick Desfarges, a die-hard and very fast XTERRA racer himself. “It should be a really good battle between Ruben Ruzafa, who will try to defend his title, and the former champ Bradley Weiss who will try to steal it back. We also can’t rule out Brice Daubord, the 2015 XTERRA Tahiti Champ.”

Other’s to watch include Theo Blignaut, Aidan Nugent, and Christophe Betard, who finished 4th, 6th, and 8th in last year’s race. Nico Sterk, Dominik Wychera, and Darryn Purtell will also be strong contenders.

In the women’s race the well-traveled Carina Wasle of Austria is back to defend her XTERRA Reunion title, fresh off her 14th career championship win at XTERRA Saipan last month and fifth-place showing at XTERRA Malta.

Wasle will be tested by South African Vicky Van Der Merwe, who placed 4th at XTERRA South Africa earlier this year.

This is the third year for XTERRA Reunion, which is a French and African island, located east of Madagascar, that is similar in climate and geography to Maui.

“La Reunion Island was a volcano, just like Hawaii, so competitors can expect a course like XTERRA Worlds,” said Desfarges. “We are looking forward to sharing our idyllic landscape and our authentic Creole culture, but don’t expect an easy course.”

Last year XTERRA Hall of Famer Conrad Stoltz, a well-know “course snob” took part in the event and said, “I love to race in pristine natural settings like La Reunion, which also has a very strong triathlon culture.  But for those who think the relatively tame distances of 1.5km swim, 30km mountain bike and 10km trail run, may seem like a bit of a cake walk, you are mistaken!”

Stoltz, a four-time XTERRA World Champion, added that while a typical professional triathlete will finish a 30K road ride in about 40 minutes, the fastest time on XTERRA Reunion’s 30K cycle leg was 1:12 by last year’s winner, three-time XTERRA World Champ Ruben Ruzafa.

The course includes two 750-meter loops in a calm, warm (27C) lagoon that is so full of fish and coral, it will seem like you are swimming in an aquarium.  Following the swim, the 30K mountain bike course is a combination of single track, dirt road, and highly technical sections that finishes down the famous Ravine Tabac.

“Use that downhill to catch your breath,” said Desfarges, “Because the run is another challenging mix of boulder hopping, a waist-deep river crossing, a forest, and a big climb up the volcano.”

The event offers 26 qualifying spots into XTERRA Worlds for the fastest amateurs and roughly $10,000 USD in prize money to the top six elite men and women. XTERRA Reunion also includes a 10.5K trail run and an XDUATHLON consisting of a 5K beach run and a 27.5K mountain bike leg.
XTERRA Triathlon


Coming Triathlon Events View all

    Visit website Google Map Become a fan on Facebook Follow us on Twitter Watch us on YouTube

26

Nov

2017

Sufferfest Kangaroo Island

Kangaroo Island, Australia

Website Google Map

02

Dec

2017

HITS Palm Springs

Palm Springs, CA, United States

Website Google Map YouTube

16

Dec

2017

Sufferfest Mount Martha

Mount Martha, Australia

Website Google Map

06

Jan

2018

HITS Naples

Naples, FL, United States

Website Google Map YouTube

26

Jan

2018

Israman

Eilat, Israel

Website Google Map YouTube

17

Feb

2018

Challenge Wanaka

Wanaka, New Zealand

Website Google Map YouTube

31

Mar

2018

HITS Ocala

Ocala, FL, United States

Website Google Map YouTube

14

Apr

2018

HITS Napa Valley

Napa Valley, CA, United States

Website Google Map YouTube

29

Apr

2018

Challenge Taiwan

Taitung City, Taiwan, China

Website Google Map YouTube

19

May

2018

Ironcat

I`Ampolla, Spain

Website Google Map
    Visit website Google Map Become a fan on Facebook Follow us on Twitter Watch us on YouTube

26

Nov

2017

Ironman Cozumel

Cozumel, Mexico

Website Google Map YouTube

03

Dec

2017

Ironman Western Australia

Busselton, Australia

Website Google Map

03

Dec

2017

Ironman Mar del Plata

Mar del Plata, Argentina

Website Google Map

03

Mar

2018

Ironman New Zealand

Taupo, New Zealand

Website Google Map YouTube

15

Apr

2018

Ironman African Championship

Port Elizabeth, South Africa

Website Google Map YouTube

28

Apr

2018

Ironman Texas

The Woodlands, Texas, United States

Website Google Map

06

May

2018

Ironman Australia

Port Macquarie, Australia

Website Google Map YouTube

12

May

2018

Ironman Santa Rosa

Santa Rosa, California, United States

Website Google Map

26

May

2018

Ironman Lanzarote

Canary Islands, Spain

Website Google Map

27

May

2018

Ironman Florianopolis

Florianopolis, Brazil

Website Google Map
    Visit website Google Map Become a fan on Facebook Follow us on Twitter Watch us on YouTube

03

Dec

2017

Challenge Florianopolis

Florianopolis, Brazil

Website Google Map

10

Dec

2017

Ultimate Callala

Jervis Bay NSW, Australia

Website Google Map

16

Dec

2017

Rotorua Half

Rotorua, New Zealand

Website Google Map

20

Jan

2018

Port of Tauranga Half

Tauranga, New Zealand

Website Google Map YouTube

04

Feb

2018

Hell of the West

Goondiwindi, QLD, Australia

Website Google Map

18

Feb

2018

Husky Long Course

Huskisson, NSW, Australia

Website Google Map YouTube

24

Feb

2018

Coles Bay Half

Coles Bay, TAS, Australia

Website Google Map

03

Mar

2018

Sufferfest Nagambie

Nagambie, Australia

Website Google Map

04

Mar

2018

Ocean Lava Tenerife

Santa Cruz de Tenerife, Spain

Website Google Map

17

Mar

2018

Florida Challenge

Clermont, Florida, United States

Website Google Map YouTube
    Visit website Google Map Become a fan on Facebook Follow us on Twitter Watch us on YouTube

25

Nov

2017

70.3 Bahrain

Manama, Bahrain

Website Google Map

26

Nov

2017

70.3 Phuket

Laguna Phuket, Thailand

Website Google Map YouTube

26

Nov

2017

70.3 Fortaleza

Fortaleza - Ceara, Brazil

Website Google Map

26

Nov

2017

70.3 Western Sydney

Penrith, NSW, Australia

Website Google Map

26

Nov

2017

70.3 Punta del Este

Maldonado, Uruguay

Website Google Map

03

Dec

2017

70.3 Cartagena

Cartagena de Indias, Colombia

Website Google Map YouTube

03

Dec

2017

70.3 Western Australia

Busselton, Australia

Website Google Map

09

Dec

2017

70.3 Taupo

Taupo, New Zealand

Website Google Map

14

Jan

2018

70.3 Pucon

Pucon, Chile

Website Google Map

28

Jan

2018

70.3 South Africa

Buffalo City, South Africa

Website Google Map YouTube

Triathlon News & Media Blogs View all

Kona qualifying returns to Tempe with Ironman Arizona

Kona qualifying returns to Tempe with Ironman Arizona

Friday 17 Nov 2017 [Triathlon News]

The inaugural IRONMAN Arizona was held on April 9, 2005, in cooperation with the City of Tempe and the Salt River Pima Maricopa Indian Community. With its fast course around Tempe Beach Park and Tempe Town Lake, and spectator-friendly atmosphere, the race quickly gained popularity. Given the desert heat, the race was moved to a much cooler November race date in 2008, where it attracts a wide range of triathletes who've had the whole summer to train. more

Guillaume, Riesler win Ironman Malaysia

Guillaume, Riesler win Ironman Malaysia

Monday 13 Nov 2017 [Triathlon News]

Germany's Diana Riesler extended her remarkable record-setting run with a fourth straight victory at IRONMAN Malaysia on the stunning island of Langkawi. Riesler was in control, coming out of the two-lap swim two minutes down on American Laurel Wassner but she was quickly in control on the bike. She took the lead at the 12km mark and when she arrived at T2 her advantage was over seven minutes – the only rider to go under 5 hours. All that stood between her and history was a solid marathon, which more

Bozzone, Seymour win 70.3 Los Cabos

Bozzone, Seymour win 70.3 Los Cabos

Monday 13 Nov 2017 [Triathlon News]

New Zealand's Terenzo Bozzone (NZL) had a solid day in the heat and humidity in Mexico on Sunday. The 2008 IRONMAN world champion lead the field out of the water and was accompanied by Matt Charbot (USA) throughout the much of the 90 km bike ride. The lead pair distanced themselves from the field on the course in the sand dunes and laden with cactus Bozzone enjoying the advantage heading into transition. The Kiwi hit the half marathon course hard, which left no option for Chrabot to go on the d more

Betten, Mullan win 70.3 Xiamen

Betten, Mullan win 70.3 Xiamen

Monday 13 Nov 2017 [Triathlon News]

Ireland’s Eimear Mullan was rewarded for her tenacity to win IRONMAN 70.3 Xiamen in China, two years since she last raced in an IRONMAN event. Mullan, who was out with significant injuries in 2016, has coached herself this year as she worked back into the sport based at the Thanyapura Centre in Thailand and in Scotland. It came down to the running legs, as her 1:24 effort was just enough to sprint off Switzerland’s Imogen Simmonds for the win by 100m. It was Mullan’s fourth win, her last coming more

Bozzone, Naeth highlight 70.3 Los Cabos Mexico

Bozzone, Naeth highlight 70.3 Los Cabos Mexico

Friday 10 Nov 2017 [Triathlon News]

Beautiful Baja provides the backdrop for a unique race and vacation experience. Los Cabos, Mexico is located at the tip of the Baja California Peninsula and is one of the top tourist destinations in North America. The IRONMAN 70.3 course consists of a one-lap swim on the beautiful and tranquil, clear waters of the exclusive Palmilla Bay, a one-loop cycle course along the Transpeninsular Highway linking Cabos San Lucas, San Jose del Cabo and the toll road to the airport and finishes with a two-la more

Twitter


Facebook


YouTube


Sign up for FREE NEWSLETTER:

We will never share your email address or spam you.