Currie and Watkinson take Port of Tauranga Half

Braden Currie set a new course record in holding off super-master Cameron Brown to defend the men's title at the Port of Tauranga Half, while Amelia Rose Watkinson also defended her women's title.

| January 9, 2017 | NEWS

An official directs competitors at the Port of Tauranga Half in New Zealand.

An official directs competitors at the Port of Tauranga Half in New Zealand.

Photo >Brian Scantlebury |

Since 1990 the Port of Tauranga Half has been a mainstay on the New Zealand triathlon circuit. The race, which was originally envisioned to be a wake up call for athletes as they recovered from New Year's festivities (the first event took place on January 2nd), quickly became a mainstay on the Kiwi multisport calendar. 

Kiwi legend Cameron Brown has won the event 10 times in his storied career and came close to stealing the show from defending champ Braden Currie in this year's race, too. A slow swim start put Brown, 44, a bit behind through the first two legs of the race. Currie was amongst the leaders out of the water and then pulled away towards the end of the bike to lead the way on to the run course.

Currie's 3:45:38 was enough to break the old course record by over two minutes. Brown managed to catch 19-year-old Hayden Wilde with 5 km to go to move into second, finishing just a second shy of the old course record himself. Wilde hung on for third.

Amelia Rose Watkinson successfully defended her title, pulling clear on the bike and never looking back as she crossed the line in 4:16:30, 2:34 ahead of Julia Grant. Teresa Adam held on for third.