The 2019 XTERRA Asia-Pacific Championship off-road triathlon festival weekend is set for March 30-31, 2019, at Kenting National Park on the southern tip of Taiwan in Pingtung County.
Last year’s inaugural event in Taiwan was reportedly honoured as the ‘Best Off-Road Triathlon in Asia for 2018’ by AsiaTRI.com correspondents, who added that ‘last September’s race lived up to the expectations of off-road triathletes and that Kenting National Park is an idyllic outdoor sports paradise.’
The main event is Saturday, March 30, and boasts a US$25,000 elite prize purse, 51 qualifying spots to the XTERRA Worlds for amateur racers, and a 100-point scale scoring structure for both amateurs and elites vying for XTERRA Asia-Pacific Tour honours.
The race starts with a 1.5K swim at Little Bay Beach, follows with a 26K mountain bike that traverses coastal terrain to rocky riverbeds, to uncharted territory high atop Menmalou mountain, and finishes with a 10K trail run through the ‘enchanted forest’ of Chihniuling.
Other weekend events include the Xticer beginner distance off-road triathlon, trail runs, kids races, live music, local cuisine, cultural demonstrations, and entertainment for family, friends, spectators and racers alike. All the action will unfold at the Kenting Youth Activity Center which showcases the area’s traditional Minnan style architecture.
“Following a successful debut race at Kenting in September, it was clear Taiwan could host a world-class event and provide a magnificent experience for competitors,” said XTERRA President, Janet Clark.
“I was impressed with their attention to detail, from the unique cultural experiences like the local song and dance performance at the start of the race to the 750m of red carpet they laid down from the beach to transition. Plus, getting in-and-out of Kaoshiung International Airport is a breeze, the fresh seafood is fabulous, the locals are warm and welcoming, and so is the weather and the water.”
Lewis Ryan, who won the inaugural men’s elite race at XTERRA Taiwan, added “I think I can speak on behalf of everyone who participated in 2018 when I say this is an incredible event and should be on everyone’s bucket list.
“The landscape is mesmerizing, the atmosphere is beyond words, and as far as race courses go, it’s got to be one of the best, if not the best in the world. The place feels so untouched you wouldn’t be surprised if a dinosaur was waiting around the next corner.”
The sixth annual XTERRA Asia-Pacific Championship in Taiwan is the first of five majors on the 2019 XTERRA Asia-Pacific Tour that also includes stops in Rotorua, New Zealand (April 6), Moorea, Tahiti (May 31), Marunuma, Japan (Sep 15), and culminates at the inaugural XTERRA China off-road triathlon in Kunming on September 22.
For amateur racers competing in the 2019 XTERRA Asia-Pacific Tour the rules are the same as last year , i.e. ‘every race counts, most points wins’. For elites, those racing in the XTERRA Asia-Pacific Tour count just their best three out of five races, and the XTERRA Asia-Pacific Championship race in Taiwan must count as one of the three races.
There are two 100-point scale ‘Gold’ races and three 75-point scale ‘Silver’ races.
- Gold races: Taiwan and China
- Silver races: New Zealand, Tahiti, and Japan
2019 XTERRA Asia-Pacific Tour Schedule
Date – Race – Location – Elite Purse
March 30 – XTERRA Asia-Pacific Championship GOLD – Kenting, Taiwan – US$25,000
April 6 – XTERRA New Zealand Silver – Rotorua – US$7,300
May 31 – XTERRA Tahiti Silver – Moorea – US$7,500
Sept 15 – XTERRA Japan Silver – Marunuma – US$7,500
Sept 22 – XTERRA China GOLD – Kunming – US$15,000