Grand traverse numbers building
Mountain run offers new challenge
The organisers behind the Porirua Grand Traverse have added another string to its bow, with a challenging mountain run confirmed in this year’s programme.
The event, in its seventh year, takes place on April 1 but there is nothing foolish about the training needed to accomplish the elite multisport section.
The bike leg begins in Battle Hill and comes down through Cannons Creek into the city before the run leg takes competitors up to Colonial Knob, down towards Titahi Bay – with spectacular views out towards Mana Island – through Whitireia Park and down to the polytechnic.
If that isn’t gut-busting enough, there is a 10km kayak through to Pauatahanui Inlet and back, to finish.
Last year’s elite winner, Marcel Hagener, will be using the traverse as a warm-up for a big event in China, one of the organising committee, Martin Rosevear, told KapiMana News.
‘‘He’s told us he loves the fact it’s a safe, well-run event, perfect preparation for him.’’
Mr Rosevear said the number of competitors was ‘‘on track’’ for what they expected.
A duathlon, youth challenge and a fun/run walk – the latter raising money for World Vision – bring an inclusive, community flavour to the event. Added to the roster this year is a 19km mountain run, which many of the Harrier clubs are expected to enter. Runners will get access to tracks that are not usually open to the public.
‘‘We’re trying to develop more of a festival feel, our philosophy is about making it more accessible to anyone and everyone. We have such a brilliant space to do this in Porirua. It is among the most beautiful scenery you will see.’’
Mr Rosevear admits it is a ‘‘huge logistical exercise’’ to bring the event together but there is a dedicated committee who work hard to cover all the bases.
The Red Cross and Porirua City Council’s Emergency Management Team use the Porirua Grand Traverse for training.
‘‘ The organisation has become more than the event for a lot of us, there’s a lot of attention [paid] and planning done. The grand traverse is spread over 40 or 50km, on land and water and we have over 100 volunteers deployed on the day.
Last year was an eye- opener [when there was a nasty fall by one of the riders] but we handled it well, it showed we have the right systems in place.’’
For more information about the courses and how to register go to pgt.org.nz
Lacing up: Matt Wood, with a little help on this occasion from 20-month-old son Samuel, is training hard ahead of the Porirua Grand Traverse on April 1. A recent melanoma scare has reaffirmed his reliance ‘‘on God, family and friends’’, he says.