MBChB graduates race 520km of GODZone

27 March 2014

Two graduates of the Faculty of Medical and Health Sciences were part of a University-sponsored team that raced some 520km and ascended a total of over 12km.

MBChB graduates Tom Reynolds and Matt Jeans were a part of Team University of Auckland at this year’s GODZone Adventure race, an annual multi-day, expedition race in the South Island that attracts entries from around the world.

This year’s event took place in Kaikoura and asked teams to navigate, trek, mountain bike, kayak, canoe, and coaster their way along the Hurunui River, and through the Glen Wye and Kaikoura ranges. To add to the challenge, the exact details of the course weren’t released until a few hours before the race.

“The 24 hours prior to the race seemed to drag,” says 24yr-old Tom, who is now studying towards a Postgraduate Diploma in Sports Medicine. “The night before the race we sat down over some dinner and discussed our expectations and plan for the race. We were all keen on completing the full course, with a top 20 placing.”

Team University of Auckland finished the race in 14 th place, managing to keep the Kiwi dominance in the competition, with the first international team placing 15 th .

The team finished with a credible time of 5 days, 14 hours and 35 minutes. Despite a few delays at transition points, and fatigue effecting some decisions on the course, the challenge of the competition hasn’t seemed to deter them at all.

“I’m keen for more. Expedition racing has something no other race format I have tried has. It certainly redefined my limits, especially mentally.

“We wouldn’t have made the start line were it not for our supporters – our naming partner, the University of Auckland, made sure we could be there. With an expedition race under the belt, exam study will seem like a breeze from now on.”

Tom and Matt were joined by Engineering Honours students Toni Keeling (who is also studying towards a Bachelor of Science), and Ed Lawley.

Read Tom’s full blog about the race: Godzone – Team University of Auckland Racing

Get information on the course the team raced: Godzone Live - Route

From left-to-right; Thomas Reynolds, Toni Keeling, Matt Jeans, and Edward Lawley