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Wanaka's Braden Currie turned the tables on five-time champion Richard Ussher to win the Speight's Coast to Coast Longest Day title today.
Running on to to Sumner Beach to a roar of applause, to hold out defending champion Ussher (Nelson) is a moment Currie (26) will carry with him for the rest of his life.
Currie, holding back a wave of emotion, was quick to praise the support of friends and family, particularly that from his wife Sally, who is eight weeks away from giving birth to their second child.
"This (win) could not have come at a better time," Currie said of his break-through result in multisport.
"We just signed up for a block of land on Thursday, and this means it's more affordable now."
In a race reminiscent to last year, Currie made his break on the alpine section, opening up a 10min advantage and extending this out to 12min over the 15km bike stage between Klondyke and the start of the kayak stage at Mount White Station Bridge.
Despite realising this was the stage Ussher came back on him to win the title last year, Currie picked some great lines to hold this advantage through to the transition back to the bike at Gorger Bridge for the 70km ride into Sumner, where despite a strong ride in attempting to reel in Currie's lead, Ussher, could only half the deficit.
"I was worried coming into Christchurch," Currie said.
"I know Richard is not one to give up and expected him on my wheel at any stage."
Currie clocked 11hr 6min 51sec for 243km journey from the Tasman Sea on Kumara Beach to the Pacific waters on Sumner Beach. Ussher for second clocked 11hr 12min 37sec, with Wanaka's Dougal Allan third in 11hr 21min 34sec.
Sophie Hart put aside the hype of a match race between her and defending champion Elina Ussher to win the open women's title in 12hr 36min 19sec, with Ussher second in 13hr 11min 49sec.
Greymouth's Seamus Meikle backed up his commanding first day effort to record a convincing victory in the two day individual section in a time of 11hrs 50min 51sec, from Mitch Munro (Christchurch) 12hr 19min 10sec and William Sams (Hamilton) third in 12hr 25min 48sec.
The Wanaka domination of the event continued with Jess Simson recording a convincing victory in the women's individual two day section, clocking 12hr 48min 11sec.
Shanel Cornille (Hamilton) was second in 13hr 56min 53sec with Naomi Cressy (Christchurch) third in 14hr 35min 33sec.