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A triple for Chico's

11 July 1999

One of the two oldest events in the Air New Zealand Queenstown Winter Festival has been won for a record third year in a row by a team from the same restaurant.

The team from Queenstown restaurant Chico's held off another local crew called The Winners to take out the traditional Peak to Park race in a record time of 53min 11secs.

The Winners, a group of local basketball players, had a time 47 seconds slower than the victorious Chico's. Third was the Mico team from Mico Wakefield.

The Peak to Park is one of the 25 year-old festival's original events together with a spaghetti-eating contest. The race is sponsored by local newspaper Mountain Scene.

Race organiser Peter Doyle, a founder of the town's annual winter festival, said this year's event was one of the best ever.

"We had the biggest spectator crowd I can remember and as usual it was a great day with no injuries and a lot of fun had by all," Mr Doyle said.

Craig Robinson, chef at Chicos and one half of the team's wheelbarrow ski team, said he and his colleagues had done no particular training for the event.

"We just pick people for their skills," he said. "I have no idea why I'm part of the wheelbarrow."

Mr Robinson said the Chico's team had won the race three years in a row and had been second and third in the two years before that.

First prize of $500 is donated to the winning team's charity of choice. Chico's chose the Child Cancer Foundation.

The Mountain Scene Peak to Park is held in stages and times are accumulated.

Competitors start by skiing down Coronet Peak and the race degenerates from there with wheelbarrow skiing, running, skateboarding and a myriad of other disciplines before finishing with an obstacle course in Queenstown's Memorial Park.

The Canadian Ice Hockey players The Moose, who have visited New Zealand regularly for the past five years, entered a team in the Peak to Park for the first time.

The prize giving for the race was held at Memorial Park just prior to the start of the Legends Rugby match in which one of the Moose played.

New Zealand Legends defeated their Australian counterparts 54 points to 29.


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