LEGAZPI CITY, Feb. 8 (PNA) -- South Africa’s Bradley Weiss and Bermuda's Flora Duffy won the championship in the Xterra Philippines, an international triathlon championship, which local organizers called Xterra Albay 2015, held in Albay Sunday.
A total of 307 triathletes from 18 countries competed in the race.
Weiss got his first championship title as he clocked 2 hours and 28 second; followed by Mauricio Mendez of Mexico, 2:28:58; Ben Allen of Australia, 2:33:51; Brodie Gardner, 2:40:35, and Charlie Epperson, 2:51:20 for the full category.
John Leerams Chicano ranked first in the Filipino Elite full category by clocking the race with 2:51:17.
"I'll definitely come back year next year to defend my title. This is my first championship win, I love the race though it's been tough," Weiss said.
Nineteen-year-old Mendez, claimed that the race had been tough, knowing he was a minute close to Weiss.
"That was the result of my day-by-day and hour-by-hour preparation. I felt like I was really close to nature, knowing that I was in front of the Mayon Volcano, I loved the terrain, it was demanding, a lot of climbing that was everything I ask for Xterra," Mendez, a first-timer in the Philippines, said.
In the female category, Duffy ranked first by clocking the race with 2:43:40; followed by Jacqui Slack of Great Britain, 2:56:51; Dimity-Lee Duke of Australia, 3:03:18; Mieko Carey of Guam, 3:06:39; and Renata Bucher of Switzerland, the defending champion, who ranked fifth wIth 3:12:53.
Anna Marissa Remegio emerged as champion in the female Filipino elite category.
Duffy, although admitted to have experienced some difficulty, got her second major title, next to her triathlon title in Maui.
"We've concentrated a lot, especially with rocks, climbing up the slopes and trails and jumping over the river," the 27-year-old triathlete professional said.
Slack, the eight-time Xterra world titlist, expressed her admiration for Duffy in the field of triathlon.
"I didn't beat Flora. It's just that the course was all fantastic, and it suited us," she said.
This first Xterra in Albay took the athletes within the perimeter of the Mayon Volcano.
The 1.5-kilometer swim started on the shore of Lidong in Sto. Domingo, followed by a 35-kilometer bike ride passing through the roads, grasslands, rocky and sandy trails.
A 10-kilometer run completed the race, with the contestants tracking the river bed, grasslands, rocky and sandy areas on Mayon's all-terrain vehicle trail.
The stunning Mayon Volcano didn't just provide a unique backdrop but also gave the thrill to triathletes who joined the Xterra Philippines.
Wilfred Uytengsu Jr. of the Sunrise Events Inc. said the first off-road triathlon series will be held in Albay for three times.
Uytengsu said the course was much better since Cebu has been busy in the roads.
"Albay has its good scenic view and a unique race track. I have no question with its uniqueness," he said.
All finishers were awarded with special medals and trophies made from Mayon’s lava rocks made by local sculptor Vicente “Enteng Bato” Ajero. (PNA) CTB/FGS/AMM/CBD/SSC