The Kathmandu Coast to Coast is full at its earliest point in fourteen years, with record breaking numbers.
The iconic multi-sport event sold out last year for the first time since 2004 with organisers rapt at the renewed interest in the event as February is set to be see the largest number of competitors take part in its 35 year history.
“In 1983 Robin Judkins had some crazy idea about creating a race from one side of New Zealand to the other, and in 2019 it seems that New Zealander’s and a number of folks from throughout the world are still keen to participate in the most iconic adventure that is the Kathmandu Coast to Coast,” Race Director Glen Currie said.
“We are ecstatic about the response to the 2019 event and the short time it has taken to sell out in terms of our concession numbers.”
Currie said the Kathmandu Coast to Coast was a great reflection of the Canterbury community and comparisons could be drawn in terms of how the race has recovered in terms of popularity and Christchurch’s recovery post-earthquake.
“In 2013 post earthquake the event had just over 500 people participating and next year it looks as if we will double that with over 1000 people racing, with forty percent from Canterbury.”
Leading global outdoor adventure brand Kathmandu secured the naming rights and apparel sponsorship of the event in 2016 and last year’s event saw close to 900 competitors running, cycling and kayaking across the South Island. The Kathmandu Coast to Coast has become a rite of passage for multisport athletes from around the world with over 18,000 people having completed in the event in 35 years.
“Kathmandu is all about making the outdoors more accessible to adventurers and sports people of every description,” Currie said. “They are very connected with their customers who are active outdoor types, so their involvement as an engaged enthusiastic naming rights sponsor has definitely played a vital role in reenergising the event.”
With the sold out sign now up and a building wait list Currie and his team are focusing their efforts and energy on creating the best adventure and experience for competitors, support crews, volunteers and athlete fans.
“We are now excited by the prospect of putting on an amazing event that not only show cases everything that’s great about the amazing terrain and scenery it goes through, but further stamps its mark and standing as the world’s premier multi-sport bucket list event.”
Currie said last year’s trend of increasing international and female entries has continued as February’s event is set to eclipse 2004’s largest field ever of 920 competitors across both teams and individuals.
Department of Conservation restrictions limit the event to 800 entries which helps protects the pristine environment the event is held in, with two and three person relay teams only counting as one entry, which Currie said means the actual number of competitors will be well above 900 and potentially may exceed 1000 for the first time.
“To be looking at having a race record in February is just fantastic. It will be great for the event and the region with athletes and their support crew coming from throughout New Zealand and overseas which will provide an amazing atmosphere and there will be some really competitive exciting racing.”