Winter Games NZ chairman, Sir Eion Edgar, today announced 100% Pure New Zealand Winter Games is confirmed to return in August 2011 following sign off from all key central and local government partners.
Expanding on the successful inaugural event in 2009, 100% Pure New Zealand Winter Games, will feature 16 days of snow and ice sports and is expected to attract over 1000 elite athletes from throughout the world to the Southern Alps.
Speaking at the closing ceremony of the 2010 FIS Snowboard and Freestyle Junior World Championships, Sir Eion said, “We are delighted with the level of government support from the Major Events Development Fund, SPARC and Tourism New Zealand which has ensured the future of this highly regarded event. They recognize the success of the first Games and support the continued growth into 2011. Our planning is already well advanced and with the success of this year’s Junior World Championships we expect even bigger and more competitive fields next year.”
In 2009, Winter Games made global snow sports history by producing the first winter sports event of its kind outside of the Winter Olympics and by combining adaptive and able-bodied athletes in an elite event. Its importance on the elite snow sports calendar was confirmed, not only by the significant field it attracted, but by the number of competitors who went on to win medals at the Winter Olympics and Paralympics in Vancouver. Seven Paralympic and 10 Olympic medallists had competed at Winter Games, including the entire men’s snowboard halfpipe podium.
Building on that success, the 2011 provisional programme has expanded with the inclusion of two new sports and a new location outside of the Otago region. Mt Hutt near Christchurch, Canterbury will now host the Super G and Adaptive Super G alpine skiing events while the remaining alpine skiing events will stay at Coronet Peak in Queenstown.
Cardrona Alpine Resort near Lake Wanaka will host the free ski and snowboard halfpipe and big air events together with the snowboard cross and ski cross racing. Freeski and snowboard slopestyle will take place cross the valley at Snow Park NZ.