Pioneer 2018 race on hold
Ironman Oceania is reviewing the dates and race format for the February 2018 edition of the Pioneer mountainbike race through South Island back country.
The company anticipates rescheduling it to late 2018 or early 2019.
Managing director Dave Beeche said the company was committed to the race but wanted to make sure it fitted the company’s global strategy for mountainbike events.
‘‘The reality is we don’t know yet [what the new format will be]. That’s why we have postponed it. We need more time to decide on the direction we need to go,’’ Beeche said.
Ironman is part of the Wanda Sports Holdings group of sports events and brands, with its headquarters in Guangzhou, China.
The group owns the multistage Cape Epic mountainbike race in South Africa and has just purchased two Australian multistage endurance mountainbike events, the Port to Port and Cape to Cape.
The seven-day, 545km Pioneer race from Christchurch to Queenstown was founded in 2016 and has been held twice. The 2017 race attracted about 350 entries.
Beeche said ‘‘it wouldn’t take a rocket scientist to work out with Cape Epic, the Port to Port, Cape to Cape and the Pioneer, that is quite a lot of activity’’.
The company was considering a series and how that might work.
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