St Andrew’s College wins 2020 Kathmandu Academy entry


As New Zealand’s oldest running annual multisport event the Kathmandu Coast to Coast has long been synonymous with multi-generational entries. And 2021 will be no different, but perhaps more by chance than design, with two thirds of Christchurch's St Andrew’s College team, who are recipients of the Kathmandu Academy prize in 2020, all having family ties to the event.


Kayaker Georgia Spark will follow in the paddle strokes of her father Geoff, who’s competed seven time, and brother Henry, who represented St Andrew’s last year in the two day individual, when she fronts up as a key cog in the schools mixed three person team category.

Despite growing up not too far from the famous Waimakariri River, the Year 12 student says this time will be a little different, “I have done lots of adventures with my family, but not kayaking specifically. I’ve done rafting down the rivers and some kayaking as a family, but not on my own as such, so this will be a good experience.”


“Dad’s done the event a fair few times though, so it’ll be good to learn from him.”


The same can be said for cyclist Nate Pringle whose father Carl and Uncle Aaron Pringle won the two-person team in 1999. “I’m really looking forward to it, we’ve always gone down and watched so it’ll be cool to be competing.”


With much of this year’s school cycling events being cancelled due to covid restrictions Pringle says the Coast to Coast will be a great replacement. “I was really excited when Thomo (Greg Thompson) sent out the email looking for expressions of interest. This will be a great opportunity.”


And whilst no family members have completed the iconic race for Ben Ferrier, the course itself has a feeling of familiarity. “We used to live in Westport, so we’d go past the entrance to the run course, look up Goat Pass, and drive past Klondyke corner.”


Ferrier also has the perfect place to train with his family now living at Castle Hill. “I’ll hopefully get a fair bit of training around Goat Pass and Craigieburn. I really enjoy running, you get to see some pretty amazing places while you’re running and do some amazing things, push yourself and see what you can achieve. It’s all down to you.”


“It’s a pretty amazing prize! Thanks to Kathmandu. It’s an amazing opportunity.”


As part of winning an entry into the NZSSC sanctioned Kathmandu Coast to Coast Two Day team event (3 person team) the team is also gifted $1,000 worth of Kathmandu gear, free camping at Kumara Race Course, coaching and mentoring organised by the event with renowned multisporter Sam Clark, one Grade Two white water Kayak course, as well as the use of 1 x Barracuda Enigma Kayak for training and the event, Rasdex PDF and Rasdex spray deck, a loan road cycle courtesy of Fleet Cycles and Kathmandu Coast to Coast branded kit.