Motutapu racers take to the hills

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Oamaru athletes produced some strong performances at the recent Motatapu multisport event.
The Motatapu features five events _ triathlon, ultra run, off-road marathon, mountain bike and miners trail race _ where competitors traverse the Motatapu, Soho and Glencoe stations in the Queenstown and Wanaka areas.
Tim Rush, Connor Sandri, Blair Selfe and Rhys Hamilton all secured top-10 finishes in their categories in the 47km mountain bike race.
Rush was second to 2014 Commonwealth Games mountain bike gold medallist Anton Cooper in the elite male 19-29 category in a time of 1hr 59min 1sec, while Sandri was third in the elite junior male 15-18 category, clocking 2hr 13min 2sec.
Selfe was ninth in the elite male 40-45 section with a time of 2hr 20min 17sec, while Hamilton contested the 19-29 section and clocked 2hr 19min 45sec for a fifth placing.
Among the other leading Oamaru competitors was Philip Richardson, who was fifth in the 18-39 elite male section of the 42km off-road marathon.
Rush, who was talked into competing by the Selfe family, said he was content with his second placing.
“I’m as happy as I can be, I suppose. I would have liked to stay with Anton for longer than I did.”He said the most challenging aspect of the race was the river crossings. Rush enjoyed his Motatapu experience and hoped to be back next year.
“I’d like to improve my time and get a better placing.” The Motatapu, first held in 2005, attracts more than 4500 competitors annually.