Currie has good run to recapture his title
Wanaka multi sport athletes again delivered the double on Saturday with Braden Currie and Jess Simson winning the Longest Day titles in the Coast to Coast. Currie delivered a blistering mountain run performance to set him on the way to win his second consecutive title. The 27-year-old was surprised to win last year’s event, but was in a league of his on Saturday. His finish in a time of 11hrs, 18 mins, 37secs, which was 21 minutes clear of five-time champion Richard Ussher, who was forced to settle for second place. Currie’s elder, brother, Glen finished in third place in a time of 11.57.29. Currie was almost lost for words when he crossed the finish line in front of a noisy crowd and said it was a huge milestone to defend his title. ’’I don’t really believe it. I just had a really great day and nothing really went too wrong. I just felt good,’’ he said. Simson shone in the women’s oneday individual event, winning the title in her first year doing the Longest Day. She had a winning time of 13hrs, 12min, 24sec, which was 14 minutes ahead of second placed Elina Ussher. Last year, the 29-year-old Simson shattered the women’s record in the two-day women’s race and opted to test herself in the gruelling one-day race this time around but found herself fighting leg cramps and a heaving stomach. She collapsed over the finish line and had to be carried to the medical tent by her husband, Hazen Simson. "My legs were in a state of spasm. It was not until I got out of the kayak and on the bike for the (final 70km) ride in to Christchurch that the cramping stopped," she said. "Everything but my eyelids hurt today."
Congratulations: Braden Currie celebrates winning the Coast to Coast with daughter Bell and wife Sally.
Concentration: Jess Simson crossing Deception River on her way to winning the Coast to Coast on the weekend.