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SPARC awards grants to Kiwi adventurers

17 October 2006

SPARC awards grants to Kiwi adventurers

SPARC (Sport & Recreation New Zealand) is awarding grants to five teams of inspiring adventurers through its Hillary Expedition initiative.

The grants range from $10,000 through to $20,000 and aim to encourage and support Kiwis in their adventures in the great outdoors in New Zealand and around the world.

SPARC’s Push Play Manager, Deb Hurdle, said a high number of quality applications had been received and many exciting expeditions proposed including world first attempts.

“It’s heartening to see that there are so many inspiring and adventurous New Zealanders out there eager to make their mark in the great outdoors. They’re great role models for Kiwi kids,” said Hurdle.

Hurdle said SPARC’s role was to ensure that all New Zealanders were given every opportunity to achieve at all levels in sport and recreation, including outdoor adventure.

“The Hillary Expedition is one of many SPARC initiatives aimed at getting Kiwis up and active. The outdoors is an excellent environment for people to learn and grow.”

Successful applications range from base jumping in Fiordland’s Darren mountains, to crossing the Greenland icecap (700km), through to making the first ascent of the Beka Brakai Chhok mountain peak in Northern Pakistan.

Hurdle said that SPARC was thrilled to have Sir Edmund Hillary as the namesake for the initiative, originally launched in 2002.

“Hillary’s courageous and proud spirit epitomises what the quintessential Kiwi stands for. He’s highly respected by all New Zealanders,” said Hurdle.
To qualify for a grant expeditions had to include any one or combination of the following activities: tramping, mountaineering, rock climbing, cross-country skiing, white water and/or sea kayaking, mountain biking, and sailing.

SPARC is the government agency charged with promoting, encouraging and supporting sport and physical recreation in New Zealand.

Notes - successful applications:

Rock Solid Progression Project
Objective: To free climb three first ascents on three major rock walls in Fiordland and to base jump one of them.

Adventure Philosophy
Objective: To complete an all New Zealand crossing of the Greenland icecap (700km) from the east coast of Greeenland to the west followed by a kayak journey to the capital city.

The First Ascent of Beka Brakai Chhok
Objective: To make the first ascent of Beka Brakai Chhok, 6,940m; and to make a significant ascent in Karakoram by a team of two of New Zealand’s leading female mountaineers.

New Zealand Himalaya Alpine-Style Expedition
Objective: To complete ascents of technically and physically challenging routes at high altitude, in “alpine-style”.

The New Zealand ‘Lost Tower’ Expedition
Objective: To make the first ascent of the unclimbed, unnamed Tower (Cerro Incognito until local name is established) in the Aisen Province, Chile.

ENDS


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