XTERRA Worlds: Images of An Epically Muddy Day in Maui

Rom Akerson from Costa Rica and Lesley Paterson from Scotland captured the 23rd annual XTERRA World Championship off-road triathlon elite titles on a sunny but muddy day in Kapalua, Maui. More than 700 endurance athletes from 44 countries and 39 U.S. states competed in the event, which started with a one-mile rough water swim at D.T. Fleming Beach, continued with a muddy 18.5-mile mountain bike ride that traversed the West Maui Mountains, and finished with a 6.5-mile trail run through forest trails and beach sand. Read the recap here.

There was more than 4,000 feet of combined climbing on the technical bike and run courses, which were muddy and slippery due to recent rainstorms on Maui’s northwest coast.

2018 XTERRA World Championships
The XTERRA World Championship always starts with a unique Hawaiian blessing. Photo provided by XTERRA.
2018 XTERRA World Championships
The race kicked off with a 1500-meter rough water swim at D.T. Fleming Beach in Kapalua, Maui. Photo provided by XTERRA.
2018 XTERRA World Championships
New Zealand’s Sam Osborne (right) ultimately had the fastest swim of the day, posting a 20:48. Photo provided by XTERRA.
2018 XTERRA World Championships
Mexico’s Michelle Flipo was the first out of the water for the women in 21:43. Photo provided by XTERRA.
2018 XTERRA World Championships
Spain’s Ruben Ruzafa is a three-time XTERRA world champion. Photo provided by XTERRA.
2018 XTERRA World Championships
New Zealand’s Sam Osborne is hardly recognizable while making his way through the 20-mile mountain bike course. Photo provided by XTERRA.
2018 XTERRA World Championships
New Zealand’s Ollie Shaw went on to finish 13th. Photo provided by XTERRA.
2018 XTERRA World Championships
There was plenty of pre-race chatter about the muddy status of the bike course and it made for an extra challenging day for all athletes. There were several sections that required athletes to get off their bikes and walk. Photo provided by XTERRA.
2018 XTERRA World Championships
Fipo started the bike ride in the lead, but was overtaken by eventual winner Lesley Paterson. Photo provided by XTERRA.
2018 XTERRA World Championships
Athletes came from around the world to take on the very challenging XTERRA World Championship course. Photo provided by XTERRA.
2018 XTERRA World Championships
Australia’s Rodney Bell fights through the tough trail run course. Photo provided by XTERRA.
2018 XTERRA World Championships
Denmark’s Tommy Nielsen traveled to Maui to compete as part of the 45-49 age group. Photo provided by XTERRA.
2018 XTERRA World Championships
This course has it all: crazy ocean swim, epically muddy bike ride, and a tough trail run—complete with a sand portion. Photo provided by XTERRA.
2018 XTERRA World Championships
Defending world champion Bradley Weiss had to settle for second on Sunday. Photo provided by XTERRA.
2018 XTERRA World Championships
It’s hard to enjoy the view when you’re suffering. Photo provided by XTERRA.
2018 XTERRA World Championships
USA’s Suzie Snyder on her way to a fourth-place finish. Photo provided by XTERRA.
2018 XTERRA World Championships
Mud everywhere! Photo provided by XTERRA.
2018 XTERRA World Championships
New Zealand’s Lizzie Ochard battled her way to a third-place finish. After the race Orchard said that she took a conservative approach on the bike to save energy for the run. Photo provided by XTERRA.
2018 XTERRA World Championships
Hungary’s Brigitta Poor had a tough day, but managed to finish fifth. “My wheel stopped, I crashed three times, and my gears were stuck. My handlebar turned about halfway through, and I had to ride the whole way like that.” Photo provided by XTERRA.
2018 XTERRA World Championships
Australia’s Daniel Wells competed as part of the 35-39 age group. Photo provided by XTERRA.
2018 XTERRA World Championships
Costa Rica’s Rom Akerson put together a 21:44 swim, a 1:42:12 bike, and a 46:26 run to earn the victory in 2:52:42. Photo provided by XTERRA.
2018 XTERRA World Championships
Photo provided by XTERRA.
2018 XTERRA World Championships
Photo provided by XTERRA.
2018 XTERRA World Championships
The Czech Republic’s Ondrej Petr finished second in the 20-24 age group. Photo provided by XTERRA.
2018 XTERRA World Championships
High fives after a tough day on course. Photo provided by XTERRA.
2018 XTERRA World Championships
The XTERRA World Champs is in the books! Photo provided by XTERRA.