The 2019 KPMG Tortola Torture turned into a battle of the Virgin Islands with runners from the British and US Virgin Islands duking it out in the mens and ladies divisions. The US Virgin Islands won this year’s event with TJ Hindes from St John taking the mens with a time of 04:54:33.8, while Allison Janusziewicz from St Croix took the ladies in 06:08:54.10.
Although roadworks caused a course diversion and a shortening of the course by two miles, the race still proved challenging with runners diverting into Cane Garden Bay, adding an additional sea level descent and ascent, but removing the climb to Sage Mountain.
Hindes battled it out with Julius Farley, Billy Bohlke and Vincent Fournier, with multiple position changes throughout the race. Julius and Billy were neck and neck to the KPMG West End Aid Station at mile 10.4.
At the Powerade Stoutt´s Lookout Aid Station, 15 miles in, Billy was leading Julius by four minutes. By the BVI Tourist Board Aid Station at mile 22, TJ was leading Billy by just six minutes.
As the day heated up, Julius overtook Billy. But the heat began to takes its toll on TJ, as did the pace he was having to keep up to stay ahead of Julius. He collapsed to the finish 3 minutes and 28 seconds ahead of Julius (04:58:02.3), who finished looking considerably fresher. Billy finished next in 05:12:55, and Vincent a mere 8 seconds behind him (05:13:02.7).
“Dropping out of the race a couple years ago has been burning a small hole in me since it happened,” TJ said after the race.
“I put in the miles and felt like I was trained finally and was able to come back and compete. I had no real goal, I just planned to go out and walk the ups and run everything else, winning turned out to be a bonus. Everyone does such a great job organizing and making everyone appreciate the achievement of finishing this thing.”
An equally tough battle took place amongst the ladies as Allison fought to shake off Jules Potgieter, celebrating her 40th birthday, and Johanna Murphy.
Allison was first to KPMG West End Aid Station with barely four minutes to spare, by the Powerade Aid Station at Stoutt´s Lookout Johanna was leading, with Jules five seconds behind and Allison 1 minute and 28 seconds behind her.
Jules was first to the BVI Tourist Board´s Aid Station at George´s Northside after 4 hours of racing, 7 minutes ahead of Johanna who had Allison breathing down her neck 46 seconds behind.
In the end, Allison was first across the line in 06:08:54.10, Jules finished almost 8 minutes behind her (06:16:43.3) but had to battle Johanna in a bitter race to the finish for second place, crossing the line only a minute ahead (06:17:50.6).
After race Allison said: “What a great day! From the breezes and sunrise in the early morning, to the friendly and helpful aid stations, to the fun finish line party. What a great event that I’ll definitely be back for! I mean, there were moments of pure torture, but the views made it all worth it!”
In the 2-person teams, Ginger Brothers From Different Mothers (Matthew Freeman and Mark Harbison) were first overall in 05:39:18.7, followed by the Conyers Condors (Marcus Hallan and Anton Goldstein) a scant minute behind (05:40:24.6). The Swiss Enchiladas (Gabriel Obregon and Toni Bonzon) were five minutes behind them for third place (05:45:39).
Don´t Cramp My Style (Paul Mellor, Reuben Stoby, Anjali Mellor) comfortably won the 3-person teams in a time of 05:10:16.3, 38 minutes ahead of Los Mariachis from Puerto Rico (Guillermo Echevarria, Rodney Hernandez, Jose Rabat). However, the Puerto Ricans had fight all the way to the finish with Team KAV (Victoria Waterfield, Kay Reddy, Adrian Dale) close on their heels crossing the line two and half minutes after them.
A record 44 individuals competed in the 2019 KPMG Tortola Torture (48 registered). These 28 men and 17 women were joined on the course by five 2-person and eight 3-person teams.
Twenty-two of this year’s competitors were from overseas: seven from the US Virgin Islands, six from USA, four from Puerto Rico, two from Hong Kong, one from the UK, one from Canada and one from Trinidad & Tobago.
After a quick once over by the race doctor at the finish, competitors enjoyed a Flying Guinness or Baileys Express, a post-race massage by Driftwood Spa, and post-race dancing with DJ Young Money Soundz at Trellis Bay Market.
Wings For Life Run
Vincent Fournier and Jules Potgieter will be sent by TICO, the official Red Bull distributor for BVI, to ¨run for those who can´t¨ in the Wings for Life World Run (WFLWR) in Sunrise, Florida on May 5, 2019.
The WFLWR is a global charity event which takes place simultaneously in 222 cities and over 50 countries. 100% of all entry fees and all donations raised through fundraising campaigns go directly to life-changing spinal cord research projects and clinical trials at renowned universities and institutes worldwide.
Everybody starts at exactly the same moment – 11am UTC – whether it’s day or night, bright sun or pouring rain and the finish line chases the runners.
The full KPMG Tortola Torture is a 33.74 mile (54km) race that circumnavigates Tortola with only 22% on the flat, the rest is on hot and humid hills with 12,000 feet of elevation change. The steepest gradient is 33.33%.
THE KPMG Tortola Torture continued its ban of disposable bottles on the race course this year. By using reusable 5-gallon jugs and coolers, organisers eliminated the use of over 1,200 half litre bottles of water.
The KPMG Tortola Torture is open to individuals, two-person, and three-person relay teams.
Title sponsor KPMG provides audit, tax and advisory services together with industry insight to help organizations negotiate risks and perform in the dynamic and challenging environments in which they do business.
Mourant, platinum sponsor, is a leading offshore law firm, advising on the laws of the BVI, the Cayman Islands, Guernsey and Jersey.
The BVI Tourist Board is the international promotion partner.
Powerade is the hydration sponsor.
Trellis Bay Market is the finish line sponsor and host; Flying Guinness and Baileys Express are the official finish line drinks.