Eleven by 11 tribute planned

Throwback: Maurice Murphy's ability to get 11 runs in at Coronet Peak every morning before work was featured in the Mountain Scene in 2000

Queenstowners are being encouraged to complete 11 runs of Coronet Peak by 11am on Sunday in honour of a late skiing legend.

Maurice Murphy, 76, the former local Mobil service station owner, was well-known for completing “11 by 11” at Coronet Peak every winter.

Work-life balance: Maurice Murphy, who died in June aged 76

After his death in June, Shirley Popenhagen thought following in his ski tracks would be the perfect way to honour his contribution to the sport over many years.

“Maurice was an enthusiastic skier and built up a reputation for completing ’11 by 11′ and we think it is a fitting tribute for the skiers who knew him to participate in an event to honour his memory.”

She says Murphy, his wife Judy and their family have been part of the Queenstown skiing fraternity for more than 30 years – his sons ski raced through the Queenstown Alpine Ski Team (QAST).

“Maurice made a significant contribution to QAST as a committee member for many years and as a long-time supporter of the organisation and skiing in general.”

Judy says her late husband skiied at Coronet for almost 60 years.

“The philosophy behind 11 by 11 was to create a balance of work and play for himself – he felt that living in Queenstown you had to make it work.”

Anyone who knew Murphy’s encouraged to take part in the tribute, which will start at 9am this Sunday.

Registration’s at the Coronet Peak brasserie at 8.30am where armbands will be handed out – after the event skiers will meet at Heidi’s Hut.

Popenhagen says there’s parking available on site for anyone who wants to join in, but can’t ski.