Arthur Serrieres (FRA) and Michelle Flipo (MEX), just hours removed from their full-distance wins at XTERRA Nouvelle-Aquitaine on Saturday afternoon, put their speed and skill on display once again in an awe-inspiring Sunday spectacle to take the top spots for the second straight day.
Perfect weather with blue skies set the stage for the women’s elite race among the old churches and vineyards of the Bordeaux region.
Flipo (pictured) was quick to take the lead on the two-lap swim, continuing to pull ahead with every meter then looked increasingly unstoppable on the run, finishing a full one-minute, 27-seconds ahead of Alizée Paties (FRA] and Maria Calleja (ESP).
Stage 1 Elite Women
|1||Michelle Flipo, MEX||13:35.57|
|2||Alizée Paties, FRA||15:02.99|
|4||Morgane Riou, FRA||15:27.81|
|5||Emeline Azam, FRA||15:36.97|
In stage one of the men’s race Francois Vie (POR) and Will Crudgington (GBR) dropped the chase group out of the swim that included Serrieres, Ruben Ruzafa, Francois Carloni, Brian Tetard, and Julie Buffe.
On the run, Crudginton pulled ahead of Vie to finish first with a five-second lead. Serrieres came in third but it was tight racing throughout the field, with nine of the elite men finishing within seconds of each other to establish the drama for the afternoon’s second stage.
Stage 1 Elite Men
|1||Will Crudgington, GBR||10:31.20|
|2||François Vie, POR||10:36.98|
|3||Arthur Serrieres, FRA||10:37.94|
|4||Arthur Forissier, FRA||10:53.58|
|5||Ruben Ruzafa, ESP||11:02.02|
The event’s second stage offered competitors a new location and new opportunities in a pursuit style start. Flipo went first with a big gap that was based on her lead from stage one, with Paties 1’27 later, then Calleja in third at 1’41.
While Flippo lost some time on the bike, she stayed strong on the run to win her first-ever Short Track title. Morgane Riou (pictured above) continued to chip away to build positions from 4th to 2nd, with Paties finishing third.
Final Elite Women’s Results
|1||Michelle Flipo, MEX||33:44.47|
|2||Morgane Riou, FRA||35:44.40|
|3||Alizée Paties, FRA||37:06.00|
|4||Emeline Azam, FRA||38:17.80|
|6||Camille Jobard, FRA||42:02.96|
|7||Pauline Vie, POR||43:42.90|
|8||Gaelle Leduc, FRA||44:32.76|
|9||Justine Durin, FRA||48:04.67|
In the men’s second stage, Vie was quick to hunt down Will Crudgington, while Serrieres (pictured), Ruzafa, and Forissier worked to hunt down the podium. Known as ‘The Boss’, Ruzafa demonstrated his epic biking skills to take the lead on the third of four laps.
Serrieres, as XTERRA fans have come to expect, then ran down everyone once again to win his first XTERRA Short Track title of the season. His French counterpart, Forissier, passed Ruzafa on the run to take second, with the 7x World Champ coming in close behind in 3rd.
Final Elite Men’s Results
|1||Arthur Serrieres, FRA||28:12.85|
|2||Arthur Forissier, FRA||28:37.28|
|3||Ruben Ruzafa, ESP||28:49.54|
|4||François Vie, POR||29:26.11|
|5||Will Crudgington, GBR||29:40.62|
|6||Francois Carloni, FRA||31:01.18|
|7||Mathias Cloostermans, BEL||31:23.36|
|8||Geert Lauryssen, BEL||31:30.27|
|9||*Nicolas Dure, FRA||31:48.44|
|10||Julien Buffe, FRA||31:55.95|
|11||Alexandre Gleyze, FRA||32:30.63|