Senior Queenstown members of the New Zealand Ice Blacks ice hockey team are going for gold.
Brett Speirs, 28, and Braden Lee, 27, are part of a veteran forward line in the Ice Blacks squad heading to the World Champs’ division two in Melbourne. The other local players are Bert Haines, Jamie Moore-Carter and Mitchell Frear.
“Before, we only aimed to win one or two games in division two, but this time we’re over there to win,” Lee says.
The Ice Blacks won two games at the division two worlds in Estonia last year to avoid relegation.
In the Melbourne they’re playing Australia, Mexico, North Korea, Serbia and Belgium.
“We’ll be the only fully amateur team,” Speirs says – they have to fork out $3000 each to take part.
Lee, a personal trainer, says superior fitness is the only way to compete with the other teams, many coming off a full season.
The Ice Blacks travel to a training camp on Australia’s Central Coast on Saturday before the World Champs start on April 4.