Course records fall at 10th Motatapu


Records tumbled as elite athletes and thousands of weekend warriors took on the 10th Motatapu.

More than 4000 endurance sportspeople competed in the various disciplines in the annual off-road race across the high country between Wanaka and Arrowtown.

Queenstown mountain biker Kate Fluker beat her own record time by just under a minute in the women’s 47km bike race, finishing first in 2 hours 8 minutes and 31 seconds.

Queenstown based Welshman Alun Williams also set a course record in the 15km Miners’ Trail run with a time of 1:16:29 while Dunedin’s Lousia Andrew broke her own women’s record in 1:28:46.

And Wanaka triathlon world champion and Olympian Nicky Samuels broke her own record by four minutes as she won the ironman-distance triathlon.

National MTB cross-country champion Fluker says. “I’m absolutely stuffed.

“The course was great but it was pretty hot through the middle there and going through the mud was really heavy and slow, but hey that’s the same for everyone.

“Motatapu was my very first race four years ago and I love it; it’s such a great race.”

Under 23 national champion Sam Glaze won the men’s elite after keeping a steady pace with course record holder Dirk Peters.

Glaze finished in 1:51:09, unable to break Peter’s established record, who finished a minute behind him.

“I found the course super fun, so enjoyable. It was awesome,” Glaze, from Cambridge says.

“I worked together with Dirk. He was doing more work than me and we rode into the last 14km together before I found my own tempo, though I left it a bit late to get the course record,” said Gaze.

“We both had some sketchy moments and it was very hairy watching Dirk go around some of the corners.”

Queenstown rider Jim Hawkridge was delighted with his impressive sixth place finish – just seven minutes behind Glaze.

Hundreds greeted competitors as they crossed the finish line at Butler’s Green in Arrowtown.

Stafford Thompson, from Dunedin, won the men’s marathon in 2:57:15.

Coast to Coast winner and World XTERRA 2013 title holder Braden Currie won the men’s ironman-distance triathlon.

Currie, defending his title, finished in 3:55:25 but failed to beat his course record.

Samuels came home in 4:17:10, describing the race as “brutal but expected”.

Albert Town’s Grant Guise and Matthew Bixley, of Dunedin, beat 33 other teams to win the 49km adventure race – coming home in just under seven hours.