Challenge Wanaka

Wanaka’s population used to build up to New Year’s Eve, then taper off through January.

Challenge Wanaka, which started on Sunday with a children’s event and finishes on Saturday with a triathlon,  has changed that.

Instead of tapering off, visitor numbers have been building up as 1000 elite athletes from 23 countries and their supporters arrive in town.

Challenge Wanaka is billed as the world’s most scenic long distance triathlon. However, if the concentration evident on the faces of the people I’ve seen training are anything to go by the participants will be focussed on their performance rather than the scenery.

People can contest as individuals or in teams to do the 226 kilometre full iron distance or the 113 kilometre half. Some are professional athletes, others participate for the personal challenge, all are to be admired for giving it a go.

The organisers and the 500 volunteers required to help on Saturday also deserve praise. It’s a very big event for a small town and ensuring it runs smoothly takes a lot of work from a lot of people.

2 Responses to Challenge Wanaka

  1. Paul Tremewan says:

    I know I took I the scenery when I did Ironman (up here in Auckland), which is what Wanaka’s long distance tri is. I did so because I knew that the next day I would not be looking at it! At last the training was over!!
    Good luck for the Individual and Teams entering. Even as teams the individual legs are seriously long!

  2. Gooner says:

    Oh I think when you are out there for the best part of 12 hours you can enjoy the scenery. I wish I was theer competing. Need to find another 5hrs per day for that!

    And a big “ups” to all the volunteers. They are magic in events like this. Without them there is no event.

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