Coast to Coast'19 cross interview with Aussie AR stars

Kathmandu Coast to Coast is one of the toughest multisport events in the world with 243 km of cycling, running and paddling. It attracts a 1000 participants field and requires a lot of endurance, skills and simply luck to finish. Here is cross-interview with Aussie AR and multisport stars - Tim Boote (VIC), Guy Andrews(QLD), Bern Dornom (VIC), James Pretto (VIC) and Alex Hunt (TAS). We've asked these questions - scroll down for some inside, pain and good advise.

  1. 1-2 sentences to describe how was your C2C 2019.
  2. Your highest and the lowest moments and how you pushed yourself through.
  3. Main lesson you have learnt.
  4. One training advice for 2020 first - time comers.
  5. Will you be back?  

Tim Boote

My 2019 Coast race was a amazing experience in so many ways. It was physically and mentally challenging, the scenery and course were epic and everyone involved from competitors right through to supporters were great.

I had two highs which were leading the first bike by 500m for 10min and then crossing the finish line to complete my first Coast race (there were many others along the way). I had a few low points on the run and paddle but the awesome terrain soon made me forget them.

The main lesson I learnt was that you need to properly experience the run/paddle legs before the race to get a appreciation of what's involved for your race.

As per above make sure you do some really good race recon and train specifically for the race terrain as the course is so unique.

I don't think I'll be back in 2020 due to other race commitments but no doubt I'll be back in the future.

 tim boote crossed nz

Alex Hunt

Coast to Coast 2019 was an unusual race, I went in hoping to finally finish the job with a 2nd and 3rd in the past and felt in great nick at the start line. Although I wound up third again, I was actually very pleased with my race, I had a good crack at the run managing to gain some time on my main rivals before enjoying a real battle on the river with 1st and 2nd.

The best moment was an unusual one, as I was largely resigned to the fact I'd be racing for second but paddling side by side with Dougal and Sam in a leading group of 3 for over an hour in the gorge was pretty special! The worst moment was on the last bike, the breeze swung to a headwind at the same time my legs started to give way a pretty miserable hour or so resulting.

I'd always discounted the value of understanding intricacies of the river, believing that with solid preparation at home you could be competitive this years low flow was an important lesson and I would recommend paddling the upper (Mt. White to Gooseberries) and lower (Woodstock to Gorge Bridge) the week of the race.

Rock running is critical, I made an effort this year to simulate the conditions of the run and it really paid off. This can be well complimented by smart gym training general balance drills, along with strengthening exercises for lateral movement particularly ankles.

I will. Whether it's 2020 or the following year I'm still undecided.

alex hunt leading the race

James Pretto

I was frustrated and disappointed with coast 2019 as I couldn't get my body out of third gear. The atmosphere and location of the event however made up for the fact my race didn't pan how I would have liked.

The highest point was literally and figuratively reaching Goat Pass on the run...I knew the toughest part of the run was done. The lowest moment was cramping in the run paddle and last ride.

The main thing I'm taking away from this years race is that no matter how prepared you are. Shit can always happen.

I think it's very important for first timers to get over there before the event to go over the paddle and run course. It's nothing like we have here and I think it's important to enjoy the spectacular course while your not racing it.

I don't think I'll make it back for 2020 but I definitely will go back at some stage. I have some unfinished business.

james pretto at coast to coast finish

Bern Dornom

I was super excited to start the iconic coast to coast. I had had a blast training and preparing for this bucket list event and couldn't wait to race against the world's best. I smiled all day on such a spectacular course really appreciating the opportunity and ability to be able to compete in this bucket list event. My race went well with a hot pace on the first run and bike then getting my teeth stuck into the challenging terrain of the mountain run. While water levels were low especially early on, the paddle is simply breathtaking. Nothing quite beats the feeling of riding into New Brighton to Finish off the Longest Day.

My highlight was definitely the mountain run and the waimakariri paddle - so spectacular that it helps you forget how hard you are working. I made sure I took time to appreciate my surroundings and get caught up in the amazing atmosphere that surrounds the coast to coast.

Main lesson. The value of working not only on your fitness but also on the technical skills required are priceless.. rocky running and white water paddling. And make sure to take time to be able to enjoy the beauty and challenge of the race - always go faster and easier with a smile on your face.

Training advice. If at all possible it is great to be able to practice and train on the course. I went across in December to do a couple of training runs on the run course and paddle and the Rasdex classic river race was a great opportunity to paddle the river under race conditions. The more race specific training you can get in the better - scrambling and running on very rocky terrain and white water paddling.

I've ticked many boxes with Coast to Coast this time - very happy with my race and result... but am sure i will be back.

bern dornom at the finish

Guy Andrews

My race went pretty much as expected. After so many years competing I can usually get the best out of myself on the day, my over riding frustration is that with my current life circumstances I am unable to train enough to race to my capacity. I would imagine this is the frustration of many a non-professional athlete and family person.

Low moment for me was second half of the run when the lack of prep started to manifest as pain in my ankles and feet- my usual weak point. I got through by talking to my recently passed dad and knowing he would be proud of me no matter. High point - passing 20 odd paddlers on the Waimak

It's a very long way do your own race.

First timer advice - do two day if you are not a total bad ass. Do a lot of very off road running with: 3-4kg pack. Paddle long and work out what you can stomach nutritionally for 13 plus hours going harder than you ever have.

I'll consider trying to win 50 plus in 2021

Originally published at

guy andrews paddling