24 hours of Southern Traverse on this weekend

Tuesday 13 November 2007, 12:01AM
By Southern Traverse Ltd


The 2nd edition of the 24 Hours of Southern Traverse on November 16 and 17 will feature race teams from Invercargill, Winton, Alexandra and Queenstown. The field this year is wide open with the defending champions Richard Ussher and Nathan Fa'avae unable to return due to prior commitments.

The title of 'favourites' might fall on one of two teams. The Hamish Robb and Murray Thomas lead team of Kapa Design Gallery, where the vast experience of Murray could be the deciding factor. Also setting the pace at the front will be the R & R Sports team with Matt Woods.

This second 24 hours of Southern Traverse is again based in the challenging Queenstown region.

Event director Geoff Hunt says the course which involves trekking, mountain biking and kayaking will provide a good test for the teams.

"The course this year is fantastic! During late winter I did one of the trekking stages with skis (on and off my back) and it has amazing views - though the night could make it different . The final recognisance was completed a week ago and this mountain bike section will be a highlight, with just under 3000 metres of descending and only 600 metres of ascent. In the route book I have described the major part of this as "single track heaven"

The 2nd trek sees teams explores some gold mining trails and water races with more fantastic downhill on the 3rd mountain bike stage.

The course details will not be released until Friday November 16 at the pre-race briefing which is standard for Southern Traverse events.

"The race start time has been announced as midnight Friday from the edge of the Arrow river in Arrowtown" says Hunt. "While we expect the first team to finish in 15hours 15minutes with the back of the field at about 21hrs. The support crew will enjoy the event as well with coffee bars close at hand and nice TA's."