The anticipation is building for the fifth annual Yeti Trans NZ presented by Shimano
, set for February 24 – March 1. Fabled tales have circulated around the world for the last demi-decade to bring 135 racers to begin their journey in the mystical Craigieburn Forest Park.
Hailing from five continents and 12 countries, racers have six stunning days of racing the best trails of New Zealand’s South Island ahead of them. As diverse as the trails themselves, racers can expect all conditions this week from the looming forecast.
With Tropical Cyclone Oma stalled in the Coral Sea for the next week, an alternative southerly will bring gale-force winds, sharp temperature drops, and heavy rainfall for the first two days of racing before being whisked away to the heart of New Zealand’s “Adventure Capital of the World”. Despite what happens early on in the week, racers will have four more days of riding in completely different zones in Central Otago.
“We’ve had wet and wild days before, but this is the first time out of nine trans events that we’ve ever had to reconfigure plans in the event we have to cancel a day of racing,” said Megan Rose, founder and ladyboss of the Yeti Trans NZ. “We work closely with the local mountain club on all aspects of trail selection and conditions and will make the final decision on the fly as the conditions unroll in Craigieburn.”
Megan Rose (left) - ladyboss of the Trans NZ - dials in her race logistical matrix so she can personally attest to the quality of the trails leading into the event. Nate Corrigan (right), better known as the multi-tool, helps keep the operation ticking and the banter alive.
For the 12 percent who are veterans of the Yeti Trans NZ, they can expect revisions on nearly every day of racing, and a brand-new location on Day 4 – Cardrona Bike Park.
“The spectacular backdrop of the Southern Alps provides an inspirational setting for our 25-kilometer network of trails which caters to the full range of abilities – from flowy green and blue trails to techy singletrack and the most recent NZ National DH Championship track,” said Jen Houltham, communications executive at Cardrona Alpine Resort. “There will still be plenty of climbing, but a few laps on the aerial lifts allow for a day with heaps of vert.”
Behind the ladyboss of the Trans NZ is a team of 40 volunteer course marshals, medics, media squids, drivers, and food fairies who pour their heart into the week of the event. Over the past few days, they have been scouting trails, sprinkling their pink tape (and pink dots for Day 5 – Alexandra), and ensuring that the ruts are nicely bedded in for the racers to skid or slide through.
“It’s always such a good feeling to be back in New Zealand. After living on both the North and South Islands, it is a special place for me. Returning as a volley is like attending a big family reunion, but we’re shredding the best trails every day,” said Christian little (Golden, CO), second-year volunteer of the Trans NZ. “The trails are riding really nice right now, and hopefully racers will get to experience every ounce that has been meticulously laid out for them.”
Yeti NZ returns as the title sponsor for the fifth year running and presenting sponsor Shimano will be providing neutral tech support throughout the week. Several local guest riders will make their appearance on their home trails giving the weeklong contenders a rabbit to chase.
Follow the action on Pinkbike for every other day race and video recaps @transnz. The Yeti Trans NZ will be posting social updates on Facebook and Instagram continuously, and daily #FollowCamFriday
edits. Hashtag your photos #transnzenduro
to make their way onto the live stream of the Trans NZ’s Media HQ. For more information email firstname.lastname@example.org or visit www.transnz.com. Be sure to check out full daily uploads to Trans NZ's Pinkbike Photo Album
ABOUT MEGAN ROSE — Megan has been riding and racing bikes all over the world for 13 years and organizing bike events for the past nine years. She splits her time between British Columbia, Canada and New Zealand, running Trans BC 6 Day Enduro, and running the Trans NZ 5 Day Enduro race. Over the past five years, Megan has personally raced in over 40 enduro races, timed over 60 days worth of enduro races, and organized 30+ enduro races. Megan and her team look forward to bringing you the best of the best from all of these perspectives.
ABOUT YETI CYCLES — Founded in 1985, Yeti Cycles make race-bred, obsessively engineered, masterfully crafted mountain bike proven by the fastest riders in the most demanding conditions. Based in Golden, Colorado, Yeti is owned and staffed by riders who are more likely to be out riding the company’s latest creation that sitting in a conference room. Visit www.yeticycles.com to learn more.