Karapiro 2010 heads overseas with a 'World First' experience

Tuesday 28 April 2009, 7:51AM

By Rowing New Zealand



Organisers of the 2010 World Rowing Championships are set to go on the international road with a unique ‘RowBox’ that will promote New Zealand, Hamilton and the Karapiro Championships in a way no other rowing event or major sporting event in New Zealand has done before.


The RowBox is set to be unveiled in Hamilton on 28 April and promises a 100% unique experience for anyone who tries it out.


It is the first time in the sport’s history that a championship has marketed itself in this way, and the RowBox – an entire exhibition and experience inside the retractable 20 foot container - will be packing some innovative Kiwi technology when it is revealed at the European regattas in a couple of months.


The RowBox will tour the world’s major regattas allowing people to get a closer view of Karapiro both off and – through some unique and revolutionary new digital animation technology – on the water.

“It’s a little piece of New Zealand for everyone to experience,” said CEO Tom Mayo.


The container unfolds to reveal four rowing machines supplied by Concept 2 New Zealand that connected to a display of Lake Karapiro. The groundbreaking digital technology will allow users to have a virtual row along the lake as it will look during the World Championships. The stunning ‘on water’ experience will be supplemented by material promoting New Zealand, Hamilton and the Championships.

The project has been created with backing from both Tourism New Zealand and Hamilton and a busy schedule will see the RowBox make its international debut at the Munich World Cup Regatta in June before moving on to one of the glamour events in world rowing – Henley Royal Regatta. Karapiro 2010 CEO Tom Mayo hopes that the presence of the New Zealand team at Henley will add real interest to the show.


“As with most of the major regattas, we are looking at a prime site at Henley.” The New Zealand team is pencilled in to race there in their World Champs build up, and more than 200,000 spectators are expected to attend the regatta during the week. We believe there will be huge interest in what is an innovative and unique approach to both marketing the Championships and the country directly to a captive audience of potential spectators and tourists. As well as that, it gives our athletes a reminder of home and that’s got to be an advantage!”


After Henley, the provisional schedule for the RowBox includes Lucerne, Racice in the Czech Republic for the Under-23 World Championships, Poznan for the elite World Championships, Vienna for the World Masters and the biggest rowing event in the United States, the Head of the Charles in mid-October.


The home audience won’t miss out on the experience either. On its return to New Zealand, organisers are planning a nationwide tour to drum up support for the event at home. Organisers have already secured an International Olympic Committee award for environmental planning and the novel promotional programme to take Karapiro’s message to a world audience is another innovation.


Karapiro 2010 RowBox – Provisional Tour Schedule


June 19-21 Munich, Germany, World Cup.
July 2-5 Henley Royal Regatta, UK
July 10-12 Lucerne, Switzerland, World Cup.
July 23- 26 Racice, Czech Republic, World U-23 Rowing Champs.
August 23-30 Poznan Poland, World Championships
September 4- 6 Austria, Vienna, World Masters.
October 17-18 Head of the Charles Regatta, USA