Weekend warriors to face mud and fire
Thousands of mud-stained ‘‘ warriors’’ are tipped to invade Queen Elizabeth Park next month as the usually quiet reserve is transformed into a battle ground.
The park will host the New Zealand debut of Warrior Dash, a commando-type event organisers say has attracted more than a million participants worldwide.
Australian events draw up to 6000 entrants, and spokeswoman Ashlee Rose hopes to get 3000 at the Wellington event in Queen Elizabeth Park on March 16.
Entrants take on 12 obstacles over a five- kilometre course, crawling through mud pools, climbing walls and leaping hot coals, followed by ‘‘music, warrior grub and beer’’.
The list of potential obstacles includes names like Muddy Mayhem, Warrior Roast, Cliff Hanger, Barricade Breakdown and Petrifying Plunge.
‘‘Our crew will come in a week before and they’ll construct it, and turn Queen Elizabeth Park into a battleground essentially,’’ said Ms Rose.
The Wellington event precedes one in Auckland in April.
Ms Rose said they scouted the Wellington region before settling on the park.
‘‘It has to be good terrain, there has to be mud, water sources, so that just fitted the picture really for a battle ground.
‘‘If there’s not any mud, we have a mud recipe.’’
Warrior Dash started in 2009 in Chicago, United States, attracting 2000 entrants, she said. That event now draws 30,000 and is held over three days.
The record time for the course is 18 minutes 50 seconds.
Ms Rose said hard core warriors usually competed early in the day, with the ‘‘mums and dads’’ taking part in the afternoon.
‘‘There’s waves that start every half hour, but you can take as long as you like to finish the course.
‘‘It’s a really good atmosphere and it’s a broad demographic of people that get involved. You don’t have to be the most physically fit person, you just have to be up for it.’’
Entrants were encouraged to dress up as warriors and vie for prizes.
‘‘We’ve got the top three overall male and female participants, the ‘most ridiculous costume contest’ . . . and the ‘best warrior beard’.’’
The New Zealand events will be followed by three in Australia.
The Wellington winners will claim entry to the New South Wales grand final.
Saturday, March 16, 9am to 4pm, Queen Elizabeth Park, MacKay’s Crossing entrance, $95, see warriordash.co.nz.
Warriors: Competitors crawl under barbed wire in The Trenches, one of 12 potential obstacles in next month’s Warrior Dash.