There was room for seventy one teams at Chapter 5, the largest ever field at an expedition-length event in New Zealand and the largest event of it’s kind in the world. In total, 11 countries were represented - Australia, Canada, Denmark, Ireland, Japan, New Zealand, South Africa, South Korea, Sweden, United Kingdom & the USA – showing the appeal of New Zealand’s South Island as the ultimate adventure racing location. GODZone introduced the new GZ Pursuit event at this Chapter and 10 teams took up the challenge of racing in a supported format over a course that mirrored, to some extent, the GZ Pure event.
The event enjoyed the high profile company of Richie McCaw, double World Cup winning captain of the All Blacks. Richie joined the New Zealand Rugby Players Association-backed team racing for our chosen recipient charity, Cure Kids. The team included NZRPA CEO Rob Nichol, Auckland Blue player Ben Meyer, the highly experienced adventure racer Sarah Fairmaid and Richie. There is no doubt that the team presence helped push the event out into the mainstream with a staggering amount of media coverage generated. The team, using GODZone as the vehicle, were able to raise $300,000 for Cure Kids which is a great thing to be able to reflect on.