Come out swinging – Thriller deadline looms


Charity boxer De Rangi says she knew she was in a fight three punches into her bout at last year’s Thriller in the Chiller.

“She just got straight in my face,” Rangi, 43, says of opponent Gillian Guinan.

“Normally when we’d been sparring we were smiling at each other.

“I was like ‘why is she not smiling?’ Then, okay, for six minutes we’re not friends.”

The three-round battle at the Mountain Scene-sponsored event came after an intense 14-week training programme.

“I was fitter than I’ve ever been,” she says.

“It’s amazing what your body can go through. It pushes you beyond what you think you’re capable of.

“But I was still stuffed after the first round. There’s an adrenalin dump then you calm down in the second. The rest is a blur.”

Forty people have already applied to step into the ring at this year’s Thriller, held at Queenstown Events Centre on September 19.

Organiser Simon Green says: “It’s an exciting time for us with the applications coming in, awesome.”

About 75 per cent are blokes and coaches are keen to hear from more ladies.

“Our preference is for people who haven’t boxed before,” Green says. “And a big part of our decision is who this journey will be good for - who’ll benefit the most from it.

“We know how to get people up from zero to what you see in the ring.

“If you’re not feeling nervous then you’re probably not the type of person we’re looking for - it should be outside your comfort zone.”

Those who are chosen will be asked to personally raise money for the charities - the Bruce Grant Youth Trust and Branches Charitable Trust - through individual Givealittle web pages.

They’ll also face 14 exhausting and invigorating weeks of training.

“Get ready for a big commitment,” Rangi says.

The Maori Warrior, then 42, eventually lost on the night to The Banshee, aged 25.

“But I was so pleased I’d done it,” she says, “such an achievement.”

An information evening will be held at CrossFit Queenstown, Gorge Road, at 7pm this coming Monday.

Applications close May 29.