Kiwi pro claims Challenge win


New Zealand pro athlete Jamie Whyte has nabbed the coveted first place spot in the Challenge Wanaka triathlon yesterday (Saturday).

Whyte stormed home in 9hr 3min 53sec – more than four minutes ahead of second place-getter Aussie Courtney Ogden.

About 266 individual competitors battled in the gruelling race involving a 3.8km swim, 180km cycle and 42.2km run.

First female to cross the line was world-renowned Australian triathlete Belinda Granger, who also won Challenge Wanaka 2007, in 10:26:17sec.

Team Tri Stars – made up of Kiwi marathon champ Shireen Crumpton, Youth Olympic triathlon gold medallist, Aaron Barclay, and Challenge Wanaka champion Richard Ussher – took out the team title, finishing in 8:51:15sec.

All-Queenstown mixed team The Easy Tigers – Paul Faulkner, Joni Bentham and Simon Green – came fourth in their category, an hour behind the winning trio.

In the Lake Wanaka half ironman, David Plew flew across the finish in 4:21:58sec, while Britta Martin was the leading lady with a time of 4:44:08sec.