The winning nine hour Torpedo and Spring Challenge team, from left, Anja McDonald, Eloise Fry and Susie Wood, all from Nelson. Photo: Barry Whitnall Shuttersport.

Susie wins fifth Spring Challenge on home soil


New teammates on a new course did not bother Nelson’s Susie Wood, who won her fifth nine hour Torpedo 7 Spring Challenge women’s adventure race at Golden Bay over the weekend.

Susie teamed up with fellow Nelsonians Eloise Fry and Anja McDonald to complete the race in 8 hours 50 minutes and 36 seconds, winning by 54 seconds.

sport-spring-challenge-2More than 450 teams took part in the event which has a mix of rafting, hiking, mountain biking and running, as well as three, six and nine hour race options.

Susie says she was thrilled to win again with a new team after she had previously won events in Wanaka, Tapawera, St Arnaud and Hokitika.

“I thought the course was fantastic this year and the rafting was a lot of fun, plus there were a lot of navigation points that you had to work your way through,” Susie says.

“To win it with a team of local girls is really great and I think they are both really talented athletes, especially considering we came together late in the piece.”sport-spring-challenge-1

Susie says the event is great for women who want to try to push themselves.

“I ride over the Richmond Hills a lot and sometimes during the year I never see anyone, but in the weeks leading up to the Spring Challenge you see groups of women out training for something they otherwise wouldn’t be doing.”

The 2017 event will be held in Geraldine and Susie says she expects to be on the start line aiming for title number six.