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Emma Smith tops Xterra World Championships

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Whistler’s Emma Smith placed first in the 25 to 29 age group at the Xterra World Championships in Wailea, Maui this past weekend, finishing the off-road triathlon in three hours, 40 minutes and 25 seconds.

The course was comprised of a 1.5 km ocean swim, followed by a 30 km mountain bike ride and a 10 km trail run with about 800 metres of climbing. According to the course write-up, Hawaiian trails boast natural obstacles that you won’t find anywhere else in the world, and athletes compete on a dozen different surfaces, from sand to volcanic rock.

While she had a slower swim leg for her category, she followed up with the fastest bike leg of anyone in her category by almost a full minute, and a run time that was more than two minutes faster than her closest competitor — not too shabby considering that Smith’s first ever trail race was the 5 Peaks race in Whistler in August.

Nanaimo’s Melanie McQuaid, a three-time world Xterra champion, was forced to pull out after the bike leg with stomach problems.

Smith’s time is about 36 minutes back of past champion Julie Dibens, who won the female pro category this year in 3:03:57. She was also fourth among all the women racing in the age categories.

 

Fun Run a success

This past Sunday, 87 runners and walkers turned out to the inaugural 5 km Fun Run, lapping the Whistler Golf Course on Sunday morning to raise money for the Howe Sound Women’s Centre Society.

The event raised $1,100 for the centre, which provides assistance to women and children throughout the corridor.

 

Kishindo athletes in the medals

Five athletes from Whistler Kishindo martial arts headed to Burnaby last weekend to compete in the Western Canadian Martial Arts Championship.

Cooper Bathgate won silver in freestyle grappling, similar to Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, losing one match His twin brother Jackson won a bronze medal in continuous sparring, where fighters are scored for the punches and kicks they land cleanly in a one-minute match. He won the bronze medal match against Cooper, who also won his first match.

Kanta Onishi won silver in girl’s point fighting.

Carson Leigh competed in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu and earned a win, but finished off the podium.

Likewise for Sam Johnston, who competed in freestyle grappling and had one win.

Kishindo instructor Cole Manson missed the event teaching a workshop in New Brunswick, but was proud of his athletes.

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