Racing in his third XTERRA in three weeks, Josiah Middaugh brought home his 2nd win in the XTERRA Pan American Series on his home turf at XTERRA Beaver Creek.
Middaugh was second to Sam Osborne at XTERRA Victoria on July 7th, won XTERRA Quebec July 14th, and triumphed over Osborne this past Saturday to move up to 2nd place overall on the Pan American Tour standings racing 4 of the 7 races so far.
Regarding the back-to-back race schedule, Middaugh admitted “Truthfully, I was not feeling good heading into this race. As athletes we don’t set the race schedule, but it is our job to adapt and perform as best as possible. Racing and recovering was part of it, but the travel and race week responsibilities were pretty overwhelming. It was the only week I will spend in Colorado in July so it was stacked up with coaching, parenting, media, and race-week obligations.”
Middaugh put together a strong effort in the water, keeping the pressure on through the second lap of the swim to keep the gap to the lead from growing. Exiting the water with Canadian Karsten Madsen and Mike Meehan, Middaugh was 1:23 behind the leading trio of Brad Zoller, First Endurance athlete Branden Rakita and Sam Osborne who has won 3 XTERRA Pan Am races this year.
Middaugh blazed the early part of the bike, bridging the near minute and a half deficit within the first 3 miles, acknowledging “On the bike, I was able to see the front of the race early and once they were within view it made it so much easier to close the gap.”
“I felt like the leaders were pacing themselves a little too much and I like to take big risks with effort when I race because that is how I train.”
With a by far race best bike split, 2:11 quicker than Mike Meehan, backed by his 2nd fastest run split, Middaugh had sufficient time to enjoy the finish chute run in with his daughter while breaking the tape in a time of 2:09:26. Osborne finished 2:41 later in 2nd place, with Madsen a further 1:12 back in 3rd.
Elated to break the tape in front of family and friends, Middaugh said “Winning XTERRA Beaver Creek in front of the hometown crowd was pretty special considering my less than ideal preparation. I knew it would be a hard triple and Beaver Creek was where I wanted to perform the best. I had to let some fitness go and focus more on recovery to get my body to come around. I don’t feel like I did anything exceptional in the race, but I just raced to my ability on that day.”
“Racing at altitude is what I know best. I wouldn’t say it was a perfect race, but I squeezed the sponge and was able to get every drop of energy out that I could.”
Regarding race day conditions and his corresponding nutrition, Middugh said “It was a great day for the race, sunny, hot and dry. The lake was hovering just below wetsuit legal at 67.5 degrees F. For the bike I mixed a 24-ounce bottle with 240 calories and started my fueling early in the bike. I was also able to top off fluid needs with some straight water at two aid stations on the course. Since I didn’t take an EFS Liquid Shot on the bike, I was a little under my target of 300 calories on the bike. I carried an EFS Liquid Shot flask onto the run that was half diluted with water. It was enough to get to the finish line, but I feel I could have fueled a little better on the bike to be stronger the last two miles of the run.”
XTERRA Beaver Creek
Beaver Creek, Colorado
July 20, 2019
1 Josiah Middaugh 2:09:26
2 Sam Osborne 2:12:07
3 Karsten Madsen 2:13:19
4 Mike Meehan 2:13:46
5 Branden Rakita 2:15:41
6 Ryan Ignatz 2:19:10
7 Brad Zoller 2:20:23
8 Brian Smith 2:20:29
9 Will Ross 2:23:48
10 Elliot Bach 2:24:06