2018: The year of smashing records

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As the sun began to rise on the morning of March 10th over Whakatāne, New Zealand’s sunshine capital, it marked the beginning of an incredible weekend filled with broken records.  

Team 'Taking it Easy', 50km winners.

The sunrise saw the spectacular Whakatāne landscape begin to appear, with the tall, guarded mountainside, the busy streets of town and the 54 kilometres of coastline glistening in the ready sun. The scene for the weekend was set, which would soon see hundreds of dedicated Oxfam Trailwalker participant’s tread through like an army, all with one goal in mind. 

A strong team of four who go by the name “Buff Wait There’s More”, and individually as Zebedee Stone, Billie Haresnape, Dylan Steeples and Chris Webb, charged through the trail at an incredibly fast pace. Opting to run the 100km was a challenge in itself, and finishing in record breaking 12 hours, and 51 minutes is an incredible achievement. They smashed the previous Whakatāne record by a whole two hours. Zeb, the team leader, says his “motivating factor” is the work of Oxfam, and that it is all “for something bigger.” 

Like the team name “Buff Wait There’s More”, there is indeed more! 50km team ‘Taking It Easy’ definitely did not take it easy, smashing the 50km record with an astonishing time of 7 hours and 51 minutes! Team members Mike Cochrane, Katie Edmead, Kate Mclennan and Gillian Kinsella say the record was an accident but made possible due to their support crew and the “friendly rivalry” with second place team “O.T.I.F” made up of Ben Wright, Scott Todd, Nigel Melhuish and Josh Rich, who were hot on their heels the entire race and, in fact, also beat the record with their equally incredible time of 8 hours.

Team 'Buff Wait There's More', 100km winners. Photo: Artur Francisco.

Overall, the entire weekend was a huge success for many teams, support crew, event staff, volunteers, and Oxfam. Incredible things were achieved throughout the weekend, whether it was pushing to get to the next kilometre, finishing the entire trail or reaching new fundraising totals. But amongst all the success, the true victory was everyone rallying together to challenge poverty, raising money and awareness for the world’s most vulnerable people.


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Key dates

  • Oxfam Trailwalker 2019: 23-24 March
  • Whakatāne Awards tbc
  • Auckland Awards tbc
  • Wellington Awards tbc 

*dates subject to change