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Shotover Jet showcases new industry-leading boat on PM visit

Ngāi Tahu Tourism today showcased its new industry-leading sustainable boat at Shotover Jet in Queenstown with Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern and Minister of Tourism Kelvin Davis officiating the event.

Chief Executive, Quinton Hall, says it was an honour to have Prime Minister Ardern and Minister Davis meet with Ngāi Tahu Tourism this morning and see the new innovative T10 jet boat – which he describes as a piece of “true kiwi innovation”.

“We are incredibly proud of this innovative jet boat, which is Shotover Jet’s fastest ever design,” he says.

The jet boat’s sustainable features, coupled with its innovative design, make it the fastest boat that Shotover Jet has ever had – reaching speeds of 95km/h as it navigates the rocky waters.

Mr Hall says T10 is a breakthrough for the Shotover Jet team and the wider industry.

“T10 was designed by our team in New Zealand and we have tried to source as much of it as possible through New Zealand suppliers and manufacturers, with the new design making it more fuel efficient and the aluminium shell keeping it light and recyclable,” he says.

“Supporting local business is incredibly important to Ngāi Tahu Tourism, along with our sustainability values. We wanted this boat to be an industry example for sustainability and kiwi ingenuity.”

Central Maintenance Manager, Cliff Baker, says T10 can reach speeds above 95km/h and perform spins in excess of 360 degrees, compared with tourism jet boats that usually perform 270-degree spins.

“The new boat has predictable drivability, with its balanced cornering, effortless spinning, and the extra horse power gained from the 6.2L Mecruiser V8s,” he says.

“We made modifications to the shape of the hull which improve the handling characteristics of the boat, particularly in rough water conditions, and enhance its ability to glide through the water.

“The cockpit layout and modern gauges are also a great improvement on the existing models, so it’s an enjoyable experience not only for our customers but for our drivers too.”

Ngāi Tahu Tourism also took the opportunity today to announce a Ngāi Tahu marine mechanic apprenticeship at Shotover Jet, which provides a pathway for iwi members to build a career in the tourism industry.

Mr Hall says the business wants to encourage more Ngāi Tahu to consider tourism as an exciting and worthwhile career option, particularly in the field of marine mechanics.

“It has been a challenge to recruit experienced jet boat mechanics, and it’s important for us to find ways to build this talent while also enabling Ngāi Tahu whānau to develop these important skills.”

Ngāi Tahu Tourism partners with the NZ Marine and Composites Industry Training Organisation to deliver the apprenticeship programme, which offers the successful applicant on-the-job training, guidance and support, while working towards a marine mechanic qualification.

Eighteen-year-old Warena Jacobs was awarded the inaugural apprenticeship last year and has been working at Shotover Jet since May.

Applications open on Monday 9th April for the new apprenticeship.

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