Burton Open boarders skip snow for a day of Wakatipu thrills

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Star snowboarders in town for the Burton New Zealand Open have had a day away from the slopes exploring Queenstown’s sights.

Twelve riders including Olympic halfpipe gold medalist Kelly Clark and Norwegian star Mikkel Bang were whisked around local highlights as part of an adventure-packed tour on Monday.

The action kicked off with breakfast at local café Joe’s Garage before competitors jumped off the iconic Kawarau Bridge bungy. Lunch and a round of golf at Jack’s Point followed.

The day wound up with a dinner and a party at local restaurant Lone Star.

Gun Kiwi riders Nick Brown, Shelly Gotlieb (pictured), Stef Zeestraten and Possum Torr were part of the contingent, ferried by jetboats between venues.

“It’s good to have something fun before it gets all serious,” last year’s third-placed slopestyle rider Gotlieb says.

On Tuesday contenders get the chance to test out the features on Cardrona for the Burton NZ Open before qualifiers get started on Wednesday.