Posted by on Sep 11, 2019 in Enews | No Comments

New adventures welcome local Central Otago Spirited Women

Image: Deborah Beange, Deb Drake, Andrea Murphy, and Therese Stevenson

After four years of challenging women in the North Island, the inaugural Spirited Women — All Women’s Adventure Race is coming to Alexandra, Central Otago from Friday 14th – Sunday 16th February 2020. Proudly supported by the Central Otago District Council, it feels like the whole region is excited to share our unique landscape with the women who have registered for this adventurous event. We caught up with Alexandra-based working mum, Andrea Murphy, to get a little insight into how, why and what the event means for her and her team, Women of the World.

  1. Why did you register for the Spirited Women Adventure Race and what will completing the event mean to you and your team? Our team registered because we wanted a physical challenge that would force us out of our comfort zones and have fun with other women.  We all work and have families, so it is a good excuse to leave those routines and connect with the outdoors and other like-minded women.
  2. How did you hear about the event? My sister-in-law completed the event in Gisborne last year and highly recommended that we put together a team of ladies in our area to compete.
  3. Have you competed in an adventure race before or a similar type of event? We’ve all competed in single sport races (running, biking, orienteering) as individuals, but none of us have ever competed in a race with three disciplines as a team. 
  4. Which course is your team participating in (short, medium or long)? Medium.
  5. How did you choose your teammates and who are they?  Our team is made up of women with children in the 10-16 range.  We know each other through our children who attend the same school.  We chose each other because we felt like we shared a similar level of fitness and really wanted to have fun.  Don’t get me wrong, we are competitive, but our overall goal is to get fit and enjoy the day.
  6. What did you name your team?  We settled on Women of the World (WOW) because we are each from a different country, although we all live in Alexandra.  Our team members are Deb Drake (New Zealand), Andrea Murphy (Canada), Therese Stevenson (Ireland) and Deborah Beange (United States).  We believe that being a strong, fit woman has no boundaries!  We should also mention our honorary training team members, our dogs Bell, Pepper, and Penny, who accompany us on all of our training, but of course, will not take part in the actual event. 
  7. What is going to be your team’s strongest discipline & weakest discipline? (kayak, trek, mountain bike) It is probably too early to tell what our strengths and weaknesses are.  We have the least experience with kayaking and because it’s winter we haven’t really trained in this discipline at all.  We have been alternating hiking and biking, so our confidence level is higher with those disciplines.
  8. Has your team had experience with navigation? Very little, but we have signed up for a rogaine event in August that we will complete as a team. 
  9. Have you planned out your training and what locations will your training adventures take you and your team?  We are lucky to live in Central Otago where there is no shortage of trails and places to train.  We have been trying to train every Saturday in our local area, alternating the different disciplines.  Sometimes our training takes longer than expected as a result of our honorary training members, but our dogs serve as great fitness motivators, so we can’t leave them behind.  Our apologies to the vast number of rabbits that have been chased and our condolences to the growing tally of possums who have sacrificed their lives for this effort.          
  10. What are you most looking forward to on the event weekend? The excitement of having such a large event in our small town, the sense of satisfaction when we’ve finished and of course the adult beverages that will be consumed afterward in the company of good friends.      

We look forward to sharing more locally inspired stories in the lead up to the inaugural Spirited Women — All Women’s Adventure Race in the South Island. Team entries are still available.

Event: Spirited Women — All Women’s Adventure Race
Location: Alexandra, Central Otago
Date: Friday 14th – Sunday 16th February 2020

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