Big coup for Te Anau to have so many competitors racing

Te Anau is gearing up to host the world's biggest adventure race for the first time next week.

Godzone begins next Thursday, with 400 competitors racing for 10 days beginning in Te Anau and progressing around Fiordland.

The full course is 500km long for pure teams, while pursuit teams will race a 400km course.

Further details will not be available until race day.

It will begin in Te Anau's town centre from 8am.

Southland District Councillor Ebel Kremer said it was a big coup for the area to have so many participants racing.

''We are absolutely thrilled that so many adventure racers have been enticed to Te Anau and by all accounts, this is going to be one of the most exciting expeditions they will encounter,'' he said.

The event, previously held in and around Queenstown, involves disciplines including packrafting, mountain biking, trekking, kayaking, fixed ropes and canoeing.

It has attracted a field which includes several Te Anau and Southland locals, as well as many international racers who are looking forward to the race.

Teams of four compete and the members must stay within 100m of each other at all times.

Navigation is allowed only through map and compass, with no digital technology permitted.

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