Chapter 9

GZ Pure Event

"It is simply the race of the year if you love expedition races. It traverses the stunning terrain of the South Island. Regardless of where you finish you get treated like a champion by the people following Live Coverage and the organisers. Being part of a team with a common goal I believe you can achieve so much more than you ever imagined possible. GODZone regained my mind and showed that you can do anything with belief."

- Sia Svendsen (Christchurch)

GODZone without a support crew

GZ Pure is the ultimate expedition adventure racing experience with unsupported teams travelling approximately 600km across New Zealand’s wilderness for up to 8 and a half days. GZ Pure represents the most technically challenging adventure race in the world and teams should prepare accordingly. Places for GZ Pure are limited and the event is expected to sell out. All teams should consider carefully whether they have the requisite skills, physical and mental strength to complete the GZ Pure event given the technical difficulty and course length. For teams or competitors uncertain about their ability, or those who have not done a race of this length or magnitude before, the advice is to do either the GZ Pursuit event to GZ Prime event. They have all the challenges, strategy, thrill of racing hard in the wilderness, but are more achievable, particularly for first timers.

Expedition races are not all created equal. Overseas or international teams who have completed other events away from New Zealand should take the GZ Pure event extremely seriously. It will be much harder, from a technical perspective. Get the skills.


COURSE DISTANCE: Approximately 600km
RACE DATE: Friday 5th March – Saturday 13th March 2021
EXPECTED WINNING TIME: Approximately 4-5 Days
MAXIMUM TEAM NUMBER: Strictly limited – Be warned, these will go fast
TEAM FORMAT: Teams of 4. Teams must contain one female to be ranked. All male teams permitted but will not be ranked
SUPPORT CREWS: None Required (‘unsupported’)
DIFFICULTY RATING: Extreme (train and plan accordingly)
ENTRY PRICE: $8,500 (Early Entry Discount) – $9,000 (Payment Plan Entry) – $9,500 (Standard Entry) – $10,500 (Late Entry)
TROPHY CATEGORIES: Overall, International, Colt & Legends (Legends may be won by Pure, Prime or Pursuit team)
GODZone TROPHY $20,000 Total Prize Pool. Cash prizes available on the following basis: 1st overall = $10,000; 2nd overall $6,000; 3rd overall $4,000. Teams must contain at least one female and complete the full course in the time allowed to qualify for cash prizes. Prize money will not be reallocated if less than 3 teams qualify for prizes. The 1st placed team will win the GODZone trophy.
INTERNATIONAL TROPHY $10,000 Total Prize Pool. Prizes available on the following basis: 1st international team = $6,000 cash; 2nd international team $3,000 cash; 3rd international team $1,000 sponsor product. Teams must contain at least one female and complete the full course in the time allowed to qualify for cash prizes. All team members must have an overseas passport, be full time domiciled and resident overseas to qualify as an international team. Prize money will not be reallocated if less than 3 teams qualify for prizes. The 1st placed international team will win the GZ International Trophy.
COLT TROPHY $10,000 Total Prize Pool. Prizes available on the following basis: 1st colt team = Free Entry to Chapter 10 GODZone. Teams must contain at least one female and complete the full course in the time allowed to qualify for prizes. All team members must be under 30 years old and the team must have a cumulative age of less than 110 years to qualify as a colt team (at the time of the race start). The 1st placed colt team will win the GZ Colt Trophy.
LEGENDS TROPHY The Legends Trophy is awarded by the race organisers to the team that, in the twilight of their sporting careers, shows how it should be done. The Legends Trophy is open to all 3 race categories; Pure, Pursuit and Prime. Legends do not require prizes to recognise their awesomeness

What’s involved?

GZ Pure is designed to give teams the ultimate adventure racing experience. The course is set up to test the full range of skills of participants. A high level of proficiency, competence and fitness is required to successfully negotiate the course in its entirety. For example, decisions on whether to negotiate higher grade rapids or to paddle at night may be left for the teams to decide. Checkpoints will be placed in positions that will create difficult navigation and route decisions. There may be additional challenges (such as orienteering) that are set at an elite level to ensure the event provides a good challenge to both brains and brawn. As a general rule, teams will only receive key course information (maps and route handbook) a few hours before the start. Teams will receive a logistics planner one week before the race starts so that they can organise their equipment.

All teams will be expected to be self-sufficient during the event. The organisers will transport all gear boxes, bike boxes and other key equipment items such as kayaks and canoes for the teams. GZ Pure teams will transition between the different disciplines without any outside assistance. With this in mind it is important for teams to manage their equipment and supplies carefully. More information about the gear box and bike box requirements will be provided in the Newsletters.

It is anticipated that the winning teams for GZ Pure will take approximately 4-5 days to finish. Teams may be allowed to take as many as 8 and a half days to complete the GZ Pure course and there will be at least one mid-race cut off that will shorten the route to ensure that teams reach the finish line in the time allowed. GZ Pure is the ultimate event at the Adventure Like No Other. For all teams that have not done an expedition race before and who are keen to take on GODZone we highly recommend that you elect to do either the GZ Pursuit or GZ Prime events first before diving straight into GZ Pure – it’s a lot harder than you imagine. If you believe you have the requisite skills, experience, determination and desire then please Enter Now.