A group of Wanaka locals received top placement in the Spartan Hawaii Trifecta Weekend in Oahu on August 17 and 18.
Twenty five people from town, as part of The Fit Collective tour, trained for six months to prepare 22 teams to compete in the event that drew more than 3500 entries.
Seven of the group received top 10 placings in their age group category. Andrew King qualified for world champs after he completed the Trifecta, which included three distances during the weekend: 21km, 12km and 6km with more than 75 obstacles. Carissa Saxby also qualified for world champs in the 12km super distance. Sam Parry was the youngest person on the course and turned 14-years-old on the day of the race, thereby making him eligible to enter. The Wanaka team ranged in age between 14 to 56 years old.
King, owner of The Fit Collective, is New Zealand’s only qualified Spartan SGX coach and was thrilled with the results achieved. “For me the success of this event cannot be measured solely in the placings and times that are received,” he said. “Spartan is not all about the time. Every race is different with different conditions and obstacles and this one certainly proved to be an epic challenge with the heat.
“I can't put into words how proud I am of everyone. During the 6km sprint we passed a team who had a woman on homemade crutches due to hurting herself on course. Part of the Spartan rules are if you fail an obstacle, there is a 30 burpee penalty. Our team stopped and did 30 burpees for the team in support and received the following message from the group after the event, ‘What an amazing crew. Y’all helped us out at the end of the race with a burpee. This is why I love the Spartan community.’"
Spartan races are hosted worldwide, and obstacle racing is one of the fastest growing sports. Joe Desena, founder of Spartan, said, “We had one ultimate goal when creating Spartan Race: to help improve everyone’s physical and emotional health by teaching them the tenets of Spartan living from ancient Greece: simple eating, smart training, mastering resilience, and an all-out commitment to achieving a goal. In a nutshell, Spartan Race was developed to give us all a platform to create the best versions of ourselves.”