Newsletter 3

100% PURE Racing is proud to present Chapter 6 of GODZone, hosted by stunning Queenstown, the wider Central Lakes District of New Zealand. This Newsletter, the final of three released in the build up to Chapter 6, is predominantly aimed at race competitors. However, for official volunteers, invited VIPs and accredited media there may be useful information you may appreciate. Newsletter 1 can be found by clicking here and Newsletter 2 by clicking here. If you or your friends, family or supporters wish to keep up to date with developments then please remember to visit or like our Facebook page. If this Newsletter raises any questions or you are uncertain about any aspect of the event then please feel free to get in touch with us via the following options:

Competitor Enquiries General Event Enquiries
Contact: Keren McSkimming Bennetts Contact: Anna Bastin
Mobile: 029 269 5263 (international +64 29 269 5263) Mobile: 027 441 8004 (international +64 27 441 8004)
Email: Email:
Address: PO Box 1600, Queenstown, New Zealand, 9348 Address: PO Box 1600, Queenstown, New Zealand, 9348

Alternatively you can contact us on our Facebook page or by completing the form on the Contact Us page of this website. It is also worth checking our Frequently Asked Questions page to see if you can find your answer there.

State of Play

Only a month to go, eh? Where does the time go? Who knows but it’s safe to say that everything is moving ahead nicely and we are very excited about welcoming all of you to the adventure capital of New Zealand. It’s going to be another big event on every level – lots of teams (some new, some experienced, some back for a 6th time (who’d of thunk it?)), more fans than ever and a large media contingent itching to tell the story to the watching hordes . As already outlined, the course is short, sharp and a scenic stunner with teams set for a magnificent journey over the racing week. We’ve been doing some great work with our event partners behind the scenes and are looking forward to showcasing the best of adventure racing on the world’s finest and most followed Live Coverage site.

The full list of teams has just been released and can be located under the Resources tab of the main menu. All teams have now been allocated their race numbers which can be used to mark up bike and gear boxes (see below for specific details). To find out your team number please visit the Team List (team numbers are in brackets to the right of team names). If you see any errors or missing information in the team list then please update your team profile using your unique log in – all information is directly fed from your inputs so don’t blame us for your bloopers (or gaps). Remember, sponsors (existing or potential) are not huge fans of teams who make mistakes or fail to provide the correct information. Furthermore, this information will be used to populate your profiles on Live Coverage so please ensure it is completed.

Anyone watching the weather of late will have noticed how unsettled it has been. We’ve had 3 decent snow falls over the past few weeks despite it being summer.  The longer term forecast looks a lot better but it always pays to be prepared. With this in mind make sure you have some warm clothing up your sleeve if the weather looks like it will continue to be the fickle beast that we’ve so experienced this season.

General Housekeeping

We would like to remind teams that the following items require your immediate consideration. Help us to help make your experience the best possible:

Medical Forms Reminder

We should now have received all competitors medical form submissions via the following online link you are one of the few remaining individuals that have not done this yet, please ensure you have submitted the form no later than this Friday 27th January. Our on-course medics require this information for review well in advance of the event start. Failure to provide these forms will make us grumpy so we may consider adding time penalties to teams or make them do 1000 star jumps before the start as a punishment.

Payment Information for Hire and Purchase Items

Most teams have opted to purchase an extra set of maps, team handbook, hire spray decks and purchased a gearbox or 4. To minimise the administration required at Race Registration , New Zealand based teams will be required to pay by direct credit into a nominated bank account by Friday 3rd February. Keren will advise you of the payment process this coming Friday. International teams will be required to settle accounts at race registration. So please ensure you have the correct amount of cash in NZD at race registration to settle payment. Credit cards, EFTPOS and rubber cheques cannot be accepted for these items. You can log in to your Team Info page to find out more or use the amounts below to calculate your total amount payable.


  • Gear Boxes (NZD $65 each)
  • Spray Deck Hire (NZD $35 each)
  • Second Set of Maps (NZD $70)
  • Second Route Book (NZD $10)
Yellowbrick Deposits

At race registration you will be required to lodge a deposit for the Yellowbrick Tracking Device (credit card (Visa/Mastercard only)) at Race Registration. This will not be charged unless the tracker is damaged or lostDo not forget your credit card.


As previously mentioned in the Newsletters, we recommend that all teams have accommodation for both Thursday and Friday night. We also recommend that you have settled up all payments for your stay prior to your Saturday departure.

Post Event Celebrations

We are thrilled to be hosting in usual GODZone fashion, a unique kiwi style affair from 4pm on Saturday 4th March at the Sherwood Community Hotel, to celebrate the culmination of Chapter 6 and our 2017 adventure. This year will see a GODZone first. The talented Chef’s at Sherwood will be putting a traditional Hangi down in Sherwood’s own garden on site.

Prize giving will still take place at the staging area at the finish line shortly after each place getter arrives, but we will be asking these teams to step up at the Post Event Function to say a few words in recognition of their achievement’s.

Each team member will receive 4 meal vouchers in your Race Pack to redeem your meal. You are at liberty to offer a spare ticket to a loved one if a team mate has been sent home in disgrace and/or someone cannot make it. If your team is unlikely to make the Post Event Function let Keren know via email asap as this will help us finalise catering & venue numbers.

We are aware that there are a number of support crew accompanying the Pursuit Teams, friends and family that will be in Queenstown that weekend and may be keen to be a part of these celebrations. Food options available on the day, all are welcome.

The Restaurant is a licensed premise and there is a full bar available including GODZone’s Compulsory Checkpoint beer specially brewed by our event partner Altitude Brewing. Strictly no BYO.

  • Restaurant Open/Bar Open. Everyone Welcome – Saturday 4th March, prior
  • Function Starts – Saturday 4th March @ 4.00pm
  • Food Avail from – Saturday 4th March @ 4.30pm


The following schedule will give you a bit more information about what will happen before the Event starts. As has been mentioned elsewhere and on the website, we are purposely keeping pre-event faff to a minimum and we urge everyone to be as organised as they can be before they arrive in Queenstown and its surrounds. You can find a more general Event Schedule by clicking here.

Day Time Event
(18th February)
8am Outline Logistics Planner for Bike and Gear Box movements during event sent to Team Captains via email
(23rd February)
4.30pm – 6pm Pre-purchased Gear Boxes available for pick up (Race HQ – Sherwood Hotel – Workshop)
(24th February)
7.40am SHARP! Teams check in at Skyline Gondola Base Building (Gondola Passes, Race Registration & Gear Check Schedule distributed prior to loading of Gondola). Map for Skyline Gondola can be found in Newsletter 1. GZ Pursuit Teams are permitted to bring a maximum of 2 Support Crew to the Welcome and Briefing.
8:30 – 9:30am Event Welcome and Briefing (Mandatory for all competitors)
9.30am – 11.30am Registration and Gear Check (Mandatory for all competitors)

  • Sign Race Event Waivers
  • Lodge Yellowbrick deposit with credit card
  • Outstanding Hire and Purchase payments settled (Applicable to International Teams Only)
  • Gear Check (see important notes below)
  • Mesh Kayaking/Canoe Bag Collection (GZ Pure Teams Only)
  • Media Formalities

Remaining pre purchased gear boxes can be collected at completion of Race Rego and Gear Check if not picked up day prior

Kayaks and and Inflatables will be available at Race Registration for team inspection

Comprehensive Logistics Planner & Course Outline handed out to all teams on departure from Skyline and completion of all administrative activities

10am – 1pm Race Bib hand out and Team Photos at the Merrell Store in Queenstown (Mandatory for all competitors)
7pm – 10pm Team Gear boxes handed in to Logistics Officials in Queenstown (any check in times and locations relating to gearboxes will be specified at Race Registration)
(25th February)
6.30am All teams departure to start
? GZ Pure & GZ Pursuit events start

All teams will be served on a first come first served basis at each station at Registration and Gear Check. GZ Pure teams will receive an Outline Logistics Planner roughly one week before the start of the race (see above). This outline planner will give key bits of information which will allow teams to expedite their packing of boxes prior to arrival at the event. Distances, disciplines and timings will also be provided to help teams prepare. Given the supported nature of the GZ Pursuit event, an Outline Logistics Planner will not be provided to Pursuit teams, however, we will email to all captains a broad course outline giving distances, disciplines and timings. As ever at GODZone, the outline planner will be deliberately obtuse and it would be best to assume some surprises when you receive the Comprehensive Logistics Planner after completing Registration and Gear Check.

Please take note of the above timings for handing in Gear Boxes on the Friday. As a general rule gear and bike boxes are not available once they have been checked in – make sure you get them in on time and make sure you pack things in the right boxes. If this is your first GODZone you can click the image here to follow a link through to the Chapter 5 Logistics Planner which provides some rough guidance on how it all works. As a general rule you could make the following broad assumptions: Bike boxes and Box B will travel together. Bike boxes and Box B will usually be available at the start and end of biking stages (but not always). Trek Box 1 will normally be used to cover one or two trekking stages on the first half of the race. Trek Box 2 will normally be used to cover trekking stages later in the race. Box C is usually used to carry camping equipment, spare food, additional supplies and maybe pop up at random TA’s on the course where appropriate. The Mesh Water Bag will usually be available before any paddling stage and teams will be expected to take the bag and all its contents with them on the stage. Note, these are only rough guidelines and box availability will always be constrained, to a large extent, by our logistical limitations.

Important note re Maps

Both GZ Pure and GZ Pursuit Team Captains will receive all Race Maps and Race Handbook for the full course before the start. At this stage we are not releasing the time of map handout but rest assured there will be ample time to prepare your maps and plot your favourite routes. Maps and handbooks are not waterproof so we recommend that you cover them with some kind of clear seal or use map cases.

Mandatory Gear and Gear Checks

We don’t like mucking about any more than you do. We have tried to remove a lot of the faff involved with Gear Checks but this doesn’t mean we don’t take equipment seriously. We do. It is your responsibility to ensure your equipment clearly meets the minimum standards required in the Mandatory Gear List and teams should remember that the List represents the minimum required for safety and conditions may well merit that more be carried. Only the following items should be brought to Race Registration for sign off:

  • Tent x 1
  • Sleeping Bags x 4
  • Waterproof Jackets x 4
  • Throw Bags x 2 
  • Water Activities Helmet x 4 (white water certified)
  • Harness x 4

Teams are asked to bring these items to Registration to make sure they meet the minimum standard required. These will be signed off and the spec/type will be noted down by officials so that teams do not go back to their accommodation and switch items around because they are lighter (we’ve been racers for a long time and we know the tricks of the trade). We urge all those taking part to make sure that their equipment is up to scratch.

There will be random gear checks out on the course where various items of mandatory gear will need to be presented to officials. If equipment is missing or fails to clearly meet the criteria set out in the Mandatory Gear List then you should expect to be held up until replacements can be found, attributed a time penalty and may ultimately be disqualified. Everyone is looking for a competitive edge but scrimping on mandatory gear is not an area where you should aim to cut corners, it could save your life.

Mandatory Gear List Update

The following changes have been made to the Mandatory Gear List. We always aim to keep changes to a bare minimum but have to be adaptable in the face of certain safety considerations and course dynamics.

Strapping Tape requirement has been made more specific. Each team is required to carry at least 10m of tape with them at all times. Safety and Medical teams on the race at Chapter 5 Tasman reported many teams running out of tape after carrying out repairs on various ailments and injuries. We highly recommend carrying a spare 10m of tape in a bike box.

Clarification on the helmet requirements. Teams will now only be required to bring a certified cycling helmet and a certified whitewater helmet. The requirement for a dedicated climbing helmet has been dropped. A certified multisport helmet for whitewater and cycling will be acceptable. This change is in response to teams wishing to reduce the gear requirements and free up more box space and has been signed off by our safety teams.

We have received multiple questions about various Descending Devices and Prussik Loops. To remove the chance of misinterpretation and to reduce risks associated with certain devices, the safety teams will now provide ALL descending devices for teams and ALL back up systems. Ergo, teams will no longer be required to bring a descending device or back up prussik loop to GODZone.

An updated version of the Mandatory Gear List is available by clicking here.

Medical Study & Considerations

Please see below for an exciting medical study that will be taking place at Chapter 6 in Queenstown. The study will be a collaboration between Rhys John (a Doctor and highly experienced GODZone competitor) and Lynne John, the official GODZone Event Doctor.

Study name – Illness and injury related to GODZone 2017

Explanation – We are hoping that all competitors will participate in two short online questionnaires about health problems occurring during an expedition length adventure race (GODZone 2017). The first questionnaire will be sent out via email approximately two weeks before the start of the race, and will contain questions about general health, normal medications and level of preparation prior to the race. Two weeks after the end of the race we will send another email out containing questions about illness and injuries experienced while competing, and also any health problems occurring afterwards. The aim is to be able to gather information about what factors make it more likely someone is going to have a health problem during a race, and what preparation is best to prevent this. Participation is entirely voluntary, and if a competitor chooses not to participate then there will be no penalty for doing so, however we strongly urge all competitors to participate to allow more accurate information gathering. It must also be stressed that information will be gathered in a form that will not be personally identifiable and will be stored securely. We plan to feed back a summary to the race organisers, and then to competitors, to enable better race medical planning in the future. There is nothing to do right now, but look out for the first section of the questionnaire arriving in your inboxes about Monday, 13th of February.

About Rhys John – I graduated as a doctor at the end of 2012 through Dunedin Medical School. I’m currently working in Whangarei Hospital but spending all the spare time I have training for this year’s GODZone which I am racing with my father Steve. I’ve now competed in four previous GODZones and intend to do many more. I’ve started to develop a bit of a side interest in sports medicine so I’m trying to nurture it with some research which will hopefully lead into medical roles at future multisport/AR events. Check out the picture of Rhys enjoying the Matakitaki River from last years Tasman event.

Lynne John is the GODZone Event Doctor. She has put together a couple of very interesting medical pieces from her experiences at managing and observing the health and wellbeing of our competitors. See below for two great insights into overall physical health and the specifics of foot care.

Other Items


During any kayaking or canoeing stages the Yellowbrick Tracking Device must be secured inside a competitor PFD, not inside a backpack or stored inside a dry bag that is stowed inside a hatch. When you are biking or trekking, it is very important that you place your Yellowbrick Tracking Device in the top pocket of a backpack. This ensures that battery life is preserved (vital for safety reasons) and also means that the watching hordes can track your progress. Nothing stresses out your fans, friends and family more than when your tracker stops moving for hours on end simply because you’ve dumped it in the bottom of your bag.

Water Safety

Water plays an important part of GODZone and Chapter 6 is no different. All competitors should be confident in the water, be capable of swimming 500m and know how to use a survival stroke. You should also be well aware that river crossings are an integral part of New Zealand’s wilderness. Even well maintained/used tracks sometimes demanding that you cross a wide river. Take the time to work out how to cross rivers safely as a group.

Drinking Water

As a general rule the water in New Zealand is of excellent quality and few people here ever treat their drinking water when tramping out in the hills. However, it is for the teams to decide if and when to treat any they encounter. Fresh water will be made available at most but not all Transition Areas for GZ Pure Teams only. Some sections may be long and dry so ensure that you have adequate capacity on board. GZ Pursuit Team’s Support Crew must transport in their own water to all Transition Areas. If taps with running water are available these will be detailed in the Support Crew Handbook.

Darkness and Lights

Teams are reminded to have adequate lighting for the duration. There will be no significant moon to speak of during the Event so it’s going to be head torch all the way. There will be approximately 10hrs of darkness each night*, depending on the weather conditions. There will be no opportunities to recharge your batteries on route.

Bike Pumps

Many teams go to the hassle of bringing large ‘track’ pumps with them to events, taking up valuable space in their bike boxes and scant international/domestic luggage allowance. We have purchased a significant number of these pumps and they will be available for all in each Transition Area at the start of each mountain bike stage. We know that these small things can be a big help.

Paddles & Spray Decks

Teams who have hired spray decks from the organisation will not have access to them until they start any kayaking stage and will return them straight after the kayaking stage (i.e., will not have to pack them away with their paddles or in their mesh bag). All other teams will have to keep their four paddles and four spray decks together by some secure method, marked up with team name and number.  We highly recommend that you think of a way to keep everything safely and securely together as these items will be transported separately from your other equipment.

Dry Bags

We recommend that you have very good quality dry bags. In some sections your backpacks will get very very wet. The very lightweight variety of dry bags are OK for a backup inside your bag but when you’re in an open canoe or swimming, rest assured that your gear will get absolutely soaked. The general rule is to bag three times so please take note.

Magnetic Declination

As stated elsewhere on our website, this is a significant number in New Zealand and your team navigators need to know how to adjust for it. The maps are printed to grid north and you will need to know to compensate for the declination either directly on the maps or with your compass.


Given the number of teams racing at GODZone this year and the big following that the event has on  social and other forms of the media, there could be a lot of people very keen to catch up with the event as it passes around Queenstown area. That’s great and we are keen to welcome as many people to watch as possible. However, we politely remind all teams and their followers that they are not permitted to assist any of the GZ Pure teams in any way once the teams are out on the course. This includes providing accommodation, hot drinks, food, supplies, etc, as well as the more usual forms of physical assistance. GZ Pursuit teams are able to receive assistance from their Support Crews and this should only take place in dedicated Transition Areas once the race has started and at no other point on the course unless specified in the Team Handbook. We ask all team followers and supporters to liase with teams in a manner that ensures other teams and officials do not suspect foul play. Your supporters turning up to cheer you on is fantastic and we actively encourage it. Turning up with food and drink at some remote location in the dead of night will be seen as cheating and any teams found flaunting the rules will be disqualified, named and shamed.

Bike and Gear Box Weights Reminder (GZ Pure Teams Only)

When your team delivers its boxes our logistics crews will, at their own discretion, weigh one of your bike boxes and one of your gear boxes. If you exceed the stated weight limits below then you will serve a time penalty at some point on the course. There will be no margins of error or tolerances. If your bike boxes look as if they may have been built and designed with a faulty tape measure (i.e., you’ve tried to sneakily build them bigger so you can put your bike inside fully assembled) then we will also apply considerable time penalties. Electronic scales will be available to teams for weighing before they are handed in. Gear and Bike Box weight Limits:

  • Bike Box – 25kg (yes, twenty five)
  • Gear Box – 25kg (yes, twenty five)
  • Water Bag – 15kg (yes, fifteen)
Labelling your Gear and Bike Boxes

Teams have now been allocated numbers and they can be found on the Team List (number in brackets next to your team name). You are welcome to go ahead and mark your equipment with your team name and this team number. Please mark boxes clearly, you don’t want the logistics officials making mistakes because they can’t read your labels. Likewise use something that will be permanent and not wash or peel off. Paint pens are a good option or spray paint over a cut out stencil.

Gear Boxes

Each one of your four Gear Boxes must be given an identifying letter which broadly reflects what your box will be used for (though you are more than welcome to pack any item into a box, as long as you know you can access the gear you require for mandatory requirements). The four Gear Boxes should be named as follows: T1, T2, C, B (these correlate broadly with Trek 1, Trek 2, Camp, Bike – your B Box will travel with your Bike Boxes at all times). You will also need to add your Team Name and Team Number to your boxes. In addition you will have a large mesh bag, provided by the Organisers, for water activities.

Bike Boxes

Each of your Bike Boxes will need to be identified on the front, side and top with Team Number, Team Name and Competitor Name. It is important to remember your Competitor Name since some teams continue along the course in new teams or without retired team members. Having the competitor name allows us to locate your boxes accurately.


Merrell NZ would like to offer GODZone competitors a special price on their trail running footwear.  The All Out Terra range has been designed to offer athletes breathability & traction on rugged terrain. Go to and search GODZone. Enter the discount code below and receive $100 off the GODZone All Out Terra footwear range. Discount code: GODZONE

T&Cs: While stocks last. Available on Merrell website only. Single use discount. Offer valid on selected styles only. Offer ends Wednesday 8 February 2017.


GODZone Nutrition Sponsor RebelFood has developed a brand new Energise Nutribomb especially for GODZone competitors. They are offering 25% off any RebelFood products in the lead up to the event. Place your order now now at using the code GODZone and your order will be ready for collection at race registration.

RebelFood Energise  – Beetroot & Himalayan Salt has been created to provide a slow releasing energy source, packed with essential nutrients to keep the muscles, brain and blood functioning at full capacity for extended periods especially for GODZone competitors racing over 7 days.

Altitude Beer

According to Eliott & Eddie of Altitude Brewing all good adventures should finish with beer and so they have very generously brewed a special craft beer ‘The Compulsory Checkpoint’ to hand out at the GODZone finish line. The boys have decided a special ’tasting’ is in order and are inviting teams, friends and supporters along on Wednesday 22nd February at 6pm in Queenstown for a social hour of sampling and yarning. This will be the first chance to taste the GODZone beer and we can’t think of a better way to catch up with everyone before race start so hope to see as many of you there – keep an eye out on the GZ Facebook to find out which craft beer bar will be hosting


Wondering what to do in Queenstown? Look no further – The Skyline Queenstown complex offers a whole day’s worth of fun things. Located an easy five minute walk from central Queenstown, Skyline Queenstown offers awe-inspiring views of the region and an abundance of entertainment and adventure. Check out this awesome Gondola and 6 Luge rides plus 1 FREE offer now available.

Final Thoughts

We get a lot of feedback from competitors after each Chapter of GODZone – particularly in regards to the perceived difficulty of the course. You won’t be surprised to hear that teams that don’t have a great race tend to think the course was too hard. Those that exceed their own expectations will tend to effuse about how perfect it all was. The fact is the vast majority believe that we have gauged the challenge of GODZone about right and we’ve received heartening emails from those who have fallen short saying that the event should not drop it’s standards and that it is up to the teams to raise their game to the level required. We are not the sort of event that wants to appeal to the lowest common denominator so don’t come to Queenstown expecting a holiday (you can do that afterwards in style) – it’s going to be tough but, hopefully, a lot of fun and ultimately hugely rewarding.

It is our belief that each Chapter of GODZone should offer something a bit different. Whilst we aim to get the formula right in terms of delivery, we really don’t want each edition of the event to become repetitive or a mirror image of another. Every host venue has something unique to showcase and that can certainly be said of the wider Queenstown District. The distances this time around are short and some of the stages are also briefer than you would normally expect at GODZone. Will this make Chapter 6 any easier? Of course not. It will just mean that teams will go a bit quicker sometimes and then suffer the consequences of over exertion. It also means that transition times and good strategy will play a vital part for those seeking a top 10 finish.

Finally, remember to update your team details and if you have any interesting media stories, pictures or videos, get in touch or post them up to our Facebook Page so we can continue to grow our adventure racing community.

We look forward to seeing you in a few weeks for An Adventure Like No Other.