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New trail marathon confirms Rotorua’s position on world map


Photo caption: A runner at the Tarawera Ultramarathon Fun Run through Te Whakarewarewa Valley earlier this year – the Tarawera Trail Marathon will start at the world famous Pohutu Geyser at Te Puia in the valley.
Photo credit: Graeme Murray; Images accompanying this release are for the promotion of the Tarawera Trail Marathon only. They are not for commercial use.

For Immediate Release
13 August, 2014

New trail marathon confirms Rotorua’s position on world map

Rotorua’s newest trail running event makes the most of the district’s unique landscape, culture and legacy, starting at the Pohutu Geyser at Te Puia in Whakarewarewa Geothermal Valley and finishing at Hot Water Beach at Lake Tarawera.

With the tagline, Geyser to Volcano, the Tarawera Trail Marathon is the latest trail run event to be developed by NZ Trail Runs Ltd’s Paul Charteris – the man behind the Tarawera Ultramarathon which has become of the leading trail running events in the world.

The Tarawera Trail Marathon was officially launched at a special event at Te Puia in Rotorua this evening [sub: 13 August]. It will be held on 15 November, 2014, and will offer the traditional 42.2 kilometre marathon distance, as well as a 50 kilometre option. Both are open to runners and walkers.

Entrants will pass four lakes, run and walk through stunning native forest, past bubbling mud pools, steaming geysers and private farmland. They will be able to catch hidden views of Lake Rotomahana – the original home of the famous Pink and White Terraces – and then start their recovery with a soak in Lake Tarawera’s natural hot pools at the finish line. Once they arrive back at Te Puia, athletes can even feast on a special hangi to “complete” their recovery.

Mr Charteris says the marathon event will be “far from traditional”.

“This event offers a completely different perspective of New Zealand’s running trails – in fact, even if you are one of Rotorua’s most regular trail runners, you will likely discover a few new trails on this course.

“This is a truly unique event and quite simply, there is nothing else like this in New Zealand – or possibly even the world. It will hold a special place on New Zealand’s running and walking calendar and will provide the perfect build-up for the Tarawera Ultra as well.”

Destination Rotorua general manager, Oscar Nathan, says the Tarawera Trail Marathon further cements Rotorua’s position as a world-leading trail running destination.

“With so many marathon races, new events need to offer something truly special to attract the interest of overseas runners and media.

“The Tarawera Ultra has become renowned the world over and it was recently cited as one of Zealand’s “game changer” events at the recent NZ Association of Events Professionals conference. More than 970 competitors participated this year, bringing with them an estimated 1700 supporters and contributing $1.2 million to the local economy.

“Nearly 1000 entrants have already signed up for February 2015 and the new Trail Marathon just adds to the momentum that these events have. It’s a very exciting development – not just for Rotorua, but for New Zealand as well.”

Te Puia General Manager of Sales and Marketing, Kiri Atkinson-Crean, says the visitor attraction is excited – and privileged – to host the new event.

“This course follows one of our most important cultural journeys – the movement of the Tūhourangi people to Whakarewarewa Valley after the Mt Tarawera eruption, which also destroyed the Pink and White Terraces.

“These two locations were the birthplace of tourism in New Zealand, and it’s an honour to be involved in an event which extends that heritage and offers such a unique drawcard to domestic and international entrants alike.”

The Tarawera Trail Marathon will be the first sporting event to utilise the new Tarawera Trail – a new 15 kilometre walking trail which circuits part of Lake Tarawera.

The Tarawera Trail is a joint venture between the Department of Conservation and the local Tūhourangi people.

Tūhourangi kaumātua Anaru Rangiheuea says the hapū (tribe) welcome runners and walkers from all over New Zealand and from around the world to enjoy the area.

“The whole idea behind the trail was to get people familiar with the area and its history. The Trail has been developed so that people, both young and old – like me – can enjoy the area of foot and so that they have the opportunity to explore.”

After leaving the start line at Te Puia, the Tarawera Trail Marathon course includes Hemo Gorge, Whakarewarewa Forest, the Green Lake and Woodstock Farm. The course is completed on the new Tarawera Trail finishing at Hot Water Beach. Athletes will be transported to The Landing by boat, and back to Te Puia by bus.

Entries to the new Tarawera Trail Marathon opened this evening [sub: 13 August]. Further information is available at www.taraweramarathon.co.nz.

-ends-


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