Motatapu goes to extreme

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An extreme option is being added to the 2010 Motatapu mountain bike/marathon run between Wanaka and Arrowtown.

The Motatapu Adventure Run, also on March 13, will shadow the 49km Department of Conservation track but is designed for the country’s toughest off-road runners, multisporters and adventure racers.

It features four major climbs, totalling 2790 vertical metres, over a largely unformed track.

Queenstowner Hadyn Key, who was in a course-proving group last December, says the route is as challenging as any mountain run in New Zealand.

Athletes must enter as two-person teams to a maximum of 100 – entry is $290 per team and competitors have to prove their capability for the event.

Key picks the winning time will be about six and a half hours.

Entries in the conventional mountain bike and marathon fields, which opened July 1, are a quarter full already – this year’s event attracted more than 2000 bikers and 700 runners.