Multisport: Kelly, Allan again supreme in Goldrush race

Defending individual champions Kath Kelly and Dougal Allan set a scorching pace to retain their titles in the 2009 Goldrush, one of the coldest races in the event's 13-year history.

One competitor on Sunday and two yesterday were treated for hypothermia, event director Ritchie Bailey said.

"You're up high in some parts of the race and there's still snow pockets in places," Bailey said.

"Add in a frosty morning and a cold nor'wester and it was certainly colder than usual."

Kelly (36), of Millers Flat, finished 35 minutes ahead of her nearest rival, Jo Williams, of Wanaka, in a time of 19hr 44min 28sec.

Allan (23), who is based in Wanaka working as a lifeguard at the pool, finished in 17hr 36min 08sec, 48min ahead of Matty Graham, of Dunedin.

He said he enjoyed the weather.

"It was nice and cool for racing - not so good for getting you out of bed in the morning, though."

Allan said it was an achievement to have completed the gruelling event as an individual.

"Just doing it takes a toll on you and the pain of the race stays with you for a long time before you're able to think positive thoughts about it."

He was "not especially strong" at any of the disciplines involved but said his background was more as a mountain biker and runner.

Allan was unsure whether he would return a third time to defend his title.

Kelly said she always enjoyed the middle day of the Goldrush but the run on the final day was the toughest stage.

"I love the mountain bike so it's my favourite part of the race," Kelly said.

Her goal now was to compete in the Coast to Coast longest day.

She won the two-day Coast to Coast two years ago and came second to Chantel Knox, of Cromwell, this year, with only 37 seconds separating the two.

"I need to cut back my workload before it and concentrate on it properly."

Kelly works as an AI technician and said April was her busiest time.

Event organiser Neville Grubb said 360 people competed in this year's event and about a third of them were new to the three-day, 376km event.

Alexandra athlete Shaun Portegys won the individual veteran men's title, while Rachel Robertson, form Christchurch, was the first veteran woman home.

Team Fast, comprising Alex McGregor, Rob Evans and Danielle Lippitt, lived up to their name, winning the open mixed teams section.

Team Vivace (Ali van Polanen and Hannah Rae) won the open women's section.

 

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