Australia's Ben Allen and England's Jacqui Slack won the XTERRA England Championship titles last weekend at the Vachery Estate in Surrey, while local favourite Sam Gardner thrilled crowds by chasing down Belgium's Yeray Luxem in the last 200m of the race to claim silver.
On the start line last Sunday (8 September) were big names like Nico Lebrun, Richard Stannard, Hector Guerra and Kathrin Muller – all vying for honours at the first XTERRA event on British soil in five years, a £12,500 prize purse and 40 qualifying slots on offer for the 2013 world championships in Hawaii.
Allen and Slack emerged victorious having covered the 1.5km swim, 30km mountain bike course and 10km off-road trail and obstacle run in times of 2:16:09 and 2:38:57 respectively, with Slack dominating throughout the women's race despite course obstacles which included two ditch jumps, a muddy bog and a tree the size of a Fiat 500.
Emily Iredale was the other Brit on the podium, coming third behind Muller in 2:50:45. Hector Guerra (ESP) sealed the XTERRA European title by coming fourth in 2:18:45, which gave him enough qualifying points earned over the whole series to seal the win.