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USA Triathlon today announced the 2013 Off-Road Triathletes of the Year, honoring athletes for outstanding performances on challenging courses featuring an open water swim, mountain bike and a trail run.
Read the announcement from USA Triathlon:
The off-road triathlon discipline continues to gain popularity, with the International Triathlon Union officially recognizing the format as a world championship event in 2011. The Off-Road Athletes of the Year honor is presented by Garmin, and winners were selected by USA Triathlon’s Age Group Committee.
“Off-road triathlon is one of our fastest-growing areas of multisport. As you might imagine, it attracts some highly competitive athletes,” said Steve Sutherland, chair of the USA Triathlon Age Group Committee Athlete of the Year Subcommittee. “We are very pleased to honor the best of those competitors as our Off-Road Triathletes of the Year.”
Josiah Middaugh (Boulder, Colo.) and Emma Garrard (Park City, Utah) were named Elite Off-Road Triathletes of the Year for 2013. Middaugh was the winner of the Xterra Southeast and Xterra West Championships, and he was the first American finisher at the Xterra USA Championships, where he was second overall, and Xterra Worlds, where he finished fourth in the field. Garrard returned to racing in 2013 after giving birth to her son, and she was the top American finisher at the Xterra USA Championships and Xterra Worlds, finishing fourth and fifth overall, respectively.
Men’s Off-Road Triathlete of the Year: Matthew Balzer (Reno, Nev.)
Honorable Mention: Cole Bunn (Bettendorf, Iowa)
Women’s Off-Road Triathlete of the Year: Hannah Rae Finchamp (Altadena, Calif.)
Honorable Mention: Elizabeth Gruber (Loma Linda, Calif.)
Men’s Elite Off-Road Triathletes of the Year: Josiah Middaugh (Boulder, Colo.)
Women’s Elite Off-Road Triathletes of the Year: Emma Garrard (Park City, Utah)