Despite the plethora of Australian sports stars involved, it was two New Zealanders who claimed victory in the 2013 Mark Webber Tasmania Challenge yesterday, as the fifth and final day took over the city and outskirts of Hobart.
Multisport stars Richard Ussher and Braden Currie held their impressive lead built up over the preceding four days in the Tasmanian wilderness to cross the line in 19:59:00.
Aussie triathlete Courtney Atkinson and Olympic kayaker Kenny Wallace came fourth with a combined time of 28:59:51 for the five-day course.
This year’s Xterra England winner Ben Allen did not figure in the overall standings as his racing partner Guy Andrews, stuntman and former Ironman champion, had to pull out on Day 4 with food poisoning.
Describing the challenges as “gruelling and really difficult”, Allen said: “You think it’s not possible, but with your teammate there encouraging you all the way, all of the athletes being encouraging, it’s a huge reward and I’ll look at it as one of my highlights.”
The Mark Webber Tasmania Challenge involves five days of kayaking, mountain biking and trekking over 341km through all five national parks on the island. It was set up by F1 driver Mark Webber and attracted 34 teams this year, with the elites vying for AU$20k (£11k) in prize money.
Elite results – overall standings
1st: Richard Ussher / Braden Currie, Team discovertasmania.com – 19:59:00
2nd: Alex Hunt / Mark Hinder, Pure Tasmania – 22:41:30
3rd: Jarad Kohler / James Pretto, Team Swisse – 27:37:05
4th: Ken Wallace / Courtney Atkinson, Team Red Bull – 28:59:51