Motatapu mushrooms

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The sixth annual Motatapu event will be the biggest yet with the introduction of two new events. 

The inaugural 15km Miner’s Trail and a gruelling 49km two-person Adventure Run join the established off-road marathon and 50km high country mountain bike races over Motatapu, Glencoe and Soho stations this Saturday. 

The mountain bike race attracts 2000 competitors. The marathon has 780 entries, including Queenstown’s Paul Garvie, Mel Wenlock, and Kirsten Parrick. 

Queenstown multi-sporter and adventure racer Hadyn Key pairs with Wanaka’s Mat Woods in the 37-team Adventure Run. 

Local running legend and former winner Chris “The Flying Bone” Dagg runs with Arrowtown’s Darren Blackhurst in the same event. 

“We did a recce of the course five weeks ago,” Dagg says. 

“It’s pretty tough, it’s the hardest run I’ve ever done.”

Biker bounces back from injury

A Queenstowner has bounced back from a freak accident that partially blinded him to enter Motatapu’s 50km mountain bike race. 

Jim Moore, 45, was celebrating Guy Fawke’s last November at a friend’s when part of an exploded firecracker landed in his right eye. Two operations later to remove his lens, the Novotel boss can only see light and shade, with no focus. He’s getting a specially-made contact lens to improve his sight. 

“I’ve been trying to get as fit as I can to make sure I can get through. 

“I’ve come off my bike a couple of times … [partial blindness] affects your depth … hopefully I’ll be all right.”