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September 8, 2024 | Cumberland, BC

Vinge, Ward top local field at Dodge City X

From the Comox Valley Record
Natalie Ward navigates the Dodge City Cycles bike course.

Local athletes excelled on their home turf at Frontrunners Fit Chiropractic Dodge City X, a grueling multisport event that took place in Cumberland on September 9 and served as the 2023 Canadian Cross Triathlon Championship.  

Winning the overall amateur female and open gender categories, respectively, were Natalie Ward of Cumberland and Derek Vinge of Courtenay, the latter of whom celebrated his fourth overall Dodge City X title in as many years. 

On the professional side, Vancouver’s Nathan Killam of Vancouver topped the podium alongside Sechelt’s Katelyn Button, who earned her second consecutive Dodge City X elite female title. Both top professionals took home $500, part of a prize purse donated by Architype Millwork and Cabinetry.  

“Conditions were prime for a fast race, with a bit of rain a few days earlier tamping down the dust and the sun shining on race day,” said race director Ryan Parton. “It was so great seeing how stoked the elites were about our event, and about Cumberland in particular. For me, though, the biggest reward is seeing the huge smiles of all the age-groupers who came out and challenged themselves on a truly tough course.” 

Frontrunners Fit Chiropractic Dodge City X features a 1.5-km swim in Comox Lake, followed by a 23-km mountain bike and a 9.5-km trail run through Cumberland’s vast trail network. A roughly half distance “sprint” version was topped by David Frisch and Tracy Barr, both of Courtenay.   

Derek Vinge en route to his fourth consecutive age-group Standard DCX title.

Athletes who won their respective five-year age/gender categories in the standard event were also crowned Canadian cross triathlon champion and earned qualifying spots for next year’s World Multisport Championship in Townsville, Australia. 

“We attract some serious competitors for sure, like Derek (Vinge) and Natalie (Ward),” said Parton, but we also like to keep things light and honour the participation of a wide range of athletes. This year we shone the spotlight on a young man named Jonathan Loewen, who received our Tough as Dodge Award for completing the entire sprint run in combat boots.” 

The Tough as Dodge Award, presented by Dynamic Spine, Sport and Wellness, is awarded each year to a competitor who exhibits true grit or perseverance over and above the effort that’s required to simply finish the race, explained Parton. 

Frontrunners Fit Chiropractic Dodge City X is hosted by Steam Donkey Racing and supported by a contingent of local sponsors that includes Dodge City Cycles, Comox Physiotherapy Clinic, BodyNetix and Thomas Dargie.  

For full results, photos and more, visit