Chane, Billouin win XTERRA France

Maxim Chane and Solenne Billouin captured the 14th XTERRA France off-road triathlon elite titles on a rainy day in the Vosges mountains of Xonrupt on Sunday, July 4, 2021.
It’s the second XTERRA World Tour win for Chane, who got his first at the 2020 XTERRA Nouvelle-Aquitaine off-road tri in the south of France, and the first big win for Billouin.
More than 650 competitors took part in one of the truly iconic events on the XTERRA World Tour in France on Sunday.  
In the men’s elite race, Brian Tetard was the first out of the water followed by Chane, Francois Vie and Felix Forissier, with trio Karel Dusek, Arthur Serrieres, and Francois Carloni 10 seconds behind in the chase group.
Out on the bike, Vie, Chane and Felix Forissier worked together at the front, but Felix’s older brother, Arthur Forissier was looking strong as he started the charge along with Carloni. The duo bridged the gap just before reaching the famous and renowned XTERRA France bike park – consisting of wooden ramps, berms and manmade obstacles. Having successfully worked his way up from 7th place to 1st place, Arthur Forissier took control at the front of the race, closely followed Chane and Felix Forissier.
Each athlete knew they had to fight to retain or build on their position, with the talented Portuguese athlete, Francois Vie, following closely behind in fourth place but being hunted down by Jens Emil Sloth Nielsen – who is known for his mountain bike skills – coming fast from behind. Despite being one of the favorites, Serierres seemed to struggle, losing time on the bike and failing to get back in touch with the leaders.

On the second loop of the bike, Chane pushed hard at the front to lead the pack and create a 1-minute lead on Sloth Nielsen (pictured) in second, with Vie and Arthur Forissier following in 3rd and 4th place, respectively.
Heading into the run, it proved a challenge for the athletes that had had to fight to close the gap. Speaking after the race, Arthur Forissier said, “I really had to push hard to catch the leaders on the first half of the bike which cost me a lot of energy and left little in the tank for the run.”
As the weather turned, with rain and colder temperatures adding to the challenge of the event, it was Chane that came out of transition first. Looking strong from the outset, Chane managed to hold onto his lead all the way to the finish line and take the title in 3:13:52, with Sloth Nielsen and Arthur Forissier rounding out the podium in second and third place respectively, followed by Xavier Dafflon and Vie.
“I remained patient on the bike and only started pushing on the last bit which allowed me to stay focused during the run,” said Chane, who was over the moon to win in his home country.

Elite Men’s Top 5

1Maxim Chane, FRA19:232:06:4545:513:13:52
2Jens Sloth Nielsen, DEN21:042:05:4446:153:15:51
3Arthur Forissier, FRA20:432:07:4550:263:21:01
4Xavier Dafflon, SUI23:332:08:0147:013:21:07
5Francois Vie, POR19:262:09:3052:163:23:20

Full results

In the Women’s Elite race, newcomer Aneta Grabmullerova stormed the swim, one minute up on a chase group that consisted of Segolene Valance, Billouin and Jindriska Zemanova. She held onto her lead for most of the first loop of the bike course, but Billouin was hot on her heels just 30 seconds behind, followed by Zemanova and then Menditto, who had done well to close the gap after losing two-minutes on the lead pack in the swim.  

It all changed heading into the second loop of the bike, however, with Zemanova and Billouin leading the race and working as a duo to open the gap on Grabmullerova and Menditto.

“The bike course was very nice, and the conditions suited me perfectly,” said Zemanova after the race. It was Billouin that came out on top however, after making her move on the second loop of the bike and reaching transition with 1 minute and 40 seconds on the now second placed Menditto.

Billouin continued to dominate on the run, posting the fastest run split of the day and crossing the finish line in first place to earn her first major XTERRA title with a time of 3:51:24. She said, “I am ecstatic about my first XTERRA victory, and it being XTERRA France makes this even more special.”

Menditto also produced an impressive run to hold onto second place, with Zemanova posting her best XTERRA performance and finishing third, closely followed by Grabmullerova and Carina Wasle in fourth and fifth respectively.

Elite Women’s Top 5

1Solenne Billouin, FRA21:422:34:5052:233:51:24
2Marta Menditto, ITA23:422:34:5953:213:54:48
3Jindriska Zemanova, CZE22:002:37:3957:204:00:06
4Aneta Grabmullerova, CZE20:592:41:4859:154:04:23
5Carina Wasle, AUT23:392:43:1954:344:06:26

Full results

Next week, XTERRA Belgium around the castles of Namur on July 10 to conclude four straight weeks of XTERRA racing in Europe before a week off leading into XTERRA Italy Lake Scanno on July

Relive race coverage on Instagram at https://www.instagram.com/xterraeurope/
Photos and videos will be posted shortly at Facebook.com/xterraeurope.

All-Time XTERRA France Elite Champions
Year     Men’s Champ / Women’s Champ (Site)

2006    Cedric Fleureton / Renata Bucher (Saint Raphael)
2008    Nicolas Lebrun / Renata Bucher (Auron)
2008    Nicolas Lebrun / Renata Bucher (Mondelieu)
2010    Nicolas Lebrun / Marion Lorblanchet (Xonrupt)                            
2011    Victor Del Corral / Renata Bucher (Xonrupt)
2012    Asa Shaw / Helena Erbenova (Xonrupt)
2013    Nicolas Lebrun / Helena Erbenova (Xonrupt)
2014    Ruben Ruzafa  / Kathrin Mueller (Xonrupt)
2015    Ruben Ruzafa / Kathrin Mueller (Xonrupt)
2016    Ruben Ruzafa / Lesley Paterson (Xonrupt)
2017    Ruben Ruzafa / Laura Philipp (Xonrupt)
2018    Ruben Ruzafa  / Brigitta Poor (Xonrupt)
2019    Arthur Forissier / Morgane Riou (Xonrupt)
2021    Maxim Chane / Solenne Billouin (Xonrupt)

XTERRA World Championship Qualifying Series Schedule

XTERRA France was the 11th of 38 races around the world where amateur athletes could qualify for the 25th XTERRA World Championship to be held December 5, 2021 in Kapalua, Maui.

13-FebXTERRA Wellington FestivalWellington, New Zealand
27-FebXTERRA IcemanLake Pleasant, AZ, USA
27-MarXTERRA TaiwanKenting, Taiwan
10-AprXTERRA Rotorua FestivalRotorua, New Zealand
8-MayXTERRA Oak MountainPelham, AL, USA
22-MayXTERRA TahitiMoorea
12-JunXTERRA Cameron ParkWaco, TX, USA
12-JunXTERRA LoryBellvue, CO, USA
19-JunXTERRA CzechPrachatice, Czech Republic
26-JunXTERRA SwitzerlandVallee de Joux
4-JulXTERRA FranceXonrupt
10-JulXTERRA Magnolia HillNarasova, TX, USA
10-JulXTERRA BelgiumNamur
11-JulXTERRA EX2Flintsone, MD, USA
17-JulXTERRA Beaver CreekBeaver Creek, CO, USA
18-JulXTERRA Italy – Lake ScannoScanno, Abruzzo
24-JulXTERRA DINO Northern IndianaNorth Liberty, IN, USA
8-AugXTERRA PortugalGolega
14-AugXTERRA Indian PeaksNederland, CO, USA
14-AugXTERRA QuebecQuebec City, Canada
14-AugXTERRA Conquer the CraterSudbury, ON, Canada
21-AugXTERRA Lake TahoeIncline Village, NV, USA
21-AugXTERRA Germany / European ChampionshipZittau
28-AugXTERRA Nouvelle-AcquitaineMoliets-et-Villemartin, France
28-AugXTERRA TremblantMont-Tremblant, QC, Canada
4-SepXTERRA BrazilIlhabela
5-SepXTERRA VictoriaVictoria, BC, Canada
5-SepXTERRA Dominican RepublicSamana
11-SepXTERRA NetherlandsAmeland Island
12-SepXTERRA Laguna BeachLaguna Beach, CA, USA
19-SepXTERRA JapanMarunuma
25-SepXTERRA USA ChampionshipSnowbasin, UT, USA
26-SepXTERRA Trentino-Dolomiti PaganellaMolveno, Italy
European Triathlon Cross Tri Championships
9-OctXTERRA MexicoTapalpa
16-OctXTERRA GreeceVouliagmeni
23-OctXTERRA MaltaGolden Bay
5-DecXTERRA World ChampionshipKapalua, Maui

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