Members of the Wairua Mud Rookies from left; Greg Witika, Steve Fitzgerald, Al and Sharron Martin during their training on Sunday. Photo: Andrew Board.

‘Mud Rookies’ form new club

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There’s a challenging new sports club on the Nelson fitness scene thanks to Greg Witika, Sharron Martin and Steve Fitzgerald, founders of the Wairua Mud Rookies Obstacle Course Racing Club.

The sport of obstacle racing, popular in the USA, Europe and Australia, has begun to grow a dedicated following throughout New Zealand and these local trailblazers are keen to see more participation in the Nelson region.

Greg, co-owner of Nelson gym Wairua Body Coaching Systems, says the great thing about obstacle racing is that it’s totally do-able, you don’t need expensive equipment to take part. “It’s like being a kid again and playing in the great outdoors.

We utilize the trails and paths that we’re lucky enough to have on our doorstep and we put the fun back into fitness”.

The idea for the club came from Sharron, who has been a client of Greg’s for several years. She encouraged a group of fellow members at Greg’s gym to take part in “Mud, Sweat and Tears” in Christchurch during July 2013. All nine participants from their group finished the ten kilometre course and they were hooked.

The Wairua Mud Rookies are now in training for an event in April, the “Tough Mudder” race in Auckland, a 20 kilometre obstacle course. The group meets for training sessions on Sunday mornings, utilizing local running trails with gates, fences and hills as obstacles.

The club is actively seeking new members to add to their current pool of 22 people. Anybody interested in joining the club, or offering sponsorship, should contact Greg on 021 876 141.