Spring event comes to Wanaka next year
Challenge just for teams of women
Thousands of people will descend on Wanaka next September when the town hosts the ninth Spring Challenge adventure race.
The women-only race is expected to sellout its full field of 1080 competitors, organiser Nathan Fa’avae said last week.
The race coincides with the first week of the school holidays and each team of three athletes will be bringing support teams with them.
The course will be revealed a day before the race.
‘‘We like Wanaka because there are lots of course options. I think the adventure sports opportunities there are pretty great.
‘‘It will be in spring, the end of the ski season, so people will be thinking about what they can do.
‘‘Also Wanaka’s infrastructure is pretty appealing. It is set up to cater for large numbers,’’ Fa’avae said.
Courses for the 3-, 6- and 9-hour races are set according to the estimated winning times.
Competitors are not penalised for finishing within the timeframe. Some teams continued racing for up to 18 hours to complete the course, Fa’avae said.
Meanwhile, several Wanaka teams went to Hokitika last month to compete in in the 2014 Spring Challenge.
Wanaka athletes Kristy Jennings, Katharine Eustace and Floortje Draisma won the 6-hour race in 5hrs 14mins 44secs.
The 9-hour race was won in 9hrs 38mins by Sophie Hart and Fleur Pawsey of Christchurch, and Susie Wood of Nelson.
Wanaka veteran team (120yrs+) of Mary Russell, Janet Young and Phillipa Findlay were 11th in the 9-hour race, in 12hrs 11 secs.