Grand Traverse gets even grander
Porirua Grand Traverse competitors suffered from the heat but organisers have hailed the event a success, with ‘‘plenty of happy people’’ and ‘‘a real buzz’’ throughout the day.
Sunday’s event, held for the seventh time, attracted about 400 competitors, from the elite entrants, who started at Battle Hill, to the fun run that took in views over Whitireia Park and Porirua Harbour.
‘‘People got tired and there was a lot of dehydration, so we had to make an important decision to relocate one of the water stations,’’ said organising committee member Martin Rosevear.
A late decision was also made to have Whitireia Community Polytechnic as the central hub for the event, which made for a great atmosphere, he said.
One competitor was taken to hospital due to dehydration, while another had an unfortunate crash with a goat while mountain-biking up Puketiro.
‘‘He totally wrecked his bike but I can’t report on the condition of the goat, we’re not sure how he is. He [the rider] was philosophical about it, what else can you do?’’
The only negativity at the Grand Traverse was due to some times being recorded incorrectly. Rosevear said they made the decision to go from manual to a computer-timing system and there were ‘‘clearly some problems’’ that will need to be ironed out for the next year.
Accurate times and placings for the elite competition were not available at press time. It was known, however, that favourite Marcel Hagener had been beaten into second place.
‘‘We had a nice event. I’m very pleased that nothing really went wrong, no-one got lost and everyone finished safely, and there was plenty of happy people around, enjoying the day,’’ said Rosevear. ‘‘The Red Cross and Coastguard were superb and our 100- plus volunteers worked brilliantly.’’
He said they hoped to grow the Grand Traverse every year, to the point where 2000 competitors enter and corporate sponsorship come on board.
Up we go: Competitors begin the mountain race.
Moral support: Sam Boryer gives dad Shayde a boast at the end of the bike leg.