C2C 2019 WOMEN’S Longest Day Gear Review

Here we go with the women’s artillery.
I do have to comment on the kayaks and paddles used by these top 10 women! Only because there is a less of a diverse range than seen in the men’s gear. Does this mean they’re onto something for women’s paddling?
I’m pretty sure Elina paddled a Flow Rockstar, so that makes all bar one female paddled either a Rockstar or JKK Magnetar Low Line. Then going by the paddle Elina used last year (Flow MS1) It also means 7/10 used the smallest marketed paddles.

C2C gear women 2019

So what does this mean? What makes the Flow Rockstar and JKK Magnetar Low Line different to any other boat out there for women at the C2C?
I know that JKK only made a limited amount of LL Magnetars, maybe 15? Meaning they are extremely rare to come on the second hand market and would be expensive.
Does this then make the Rockstar the boat of choice for a competitive woman at the C2C if they are skilled enough to paddle it? Has this created a monopoly and any second hand Rockstar is a bidding war so buying brand new becomes your best option?
This isn’t a realistic option for everyone, so whats a girl to do?

Moving on to the menu, grab a cuppa:

C2C gear 2019 womens fuel

Nothing as exciting as the men’s gingernuts and raro but my favourite has to be Isla’s coke, milkshake and Leppin combo on the paddle ūüôā Serious rocketfuel mix there.
For anyone new Coast to Coasters looking at this info, keep it simple. Keep it uncomplicated, the day is complicated enough.

Anna ūüôā



C2C 2019 MENS Longest Day Gear Review

Hi, firstly thank you to all the competitors for responding to my questions and making this spreadsheet possible ūüôā
I would also like to reinstate that this isn’t a ranked list of fastest gear, where the first boat is faster than the others etc. The Coast to Coast is more about what works best for YOU, and in your search for what works for you, this spreadsheet will give you some options of things to try.

C2C gear 2019 v1-1

The men’s line up has a couple of stand out differences. Ryans road shoes should be noted for the mountain run, and Scott’s Eclipse lining up among some pencil thin boats. Every year there is at least one top 10 male athlete in an Eclipse, so don’t feel any less of a man if that is your weapon of choice, it might be a wise decision.

Due to popular request I have also got the menu for each of these machines. Ryan again showing that all you may need is kiwi pantry staples; gingernuts and raro. Maybe someone will race on straight sugar and salt one year… would be cheap.

C2C gear 2019 mens fuel-3

Shoot through your thoughts and comments, and hopefully this gets more people successfully crossing the country in 2020 in a more comfortable way.

P.S: Womens breakdown is in the pipeline!


Anna ūüôā

2018 in General and Coast to Coast Gear Review

I said I might be a while after GODZone 2018, and its been great. I have spent a lot of time horizontal, farming, gardening, catching up with friends, movie watching and baking. It started off as an exciting 2018 with Bobby popping the question in March. We planned for a December wedding and worked hard over the calving season, slowly watching our training and fitness degrade. It is just another element that makes farming so hard.

Then things got turned upside down. During calving we lost my dad to an aviation accident while flying to Stewart Island.  This event changed the end of 2018 to what now seems like going through the motions and wanting to disappear into a cave. However our wedding went on with dad fresh in our minds, we have done heaps on the farm and around home and we have only slowly got back into training. One day we would like to visit the crash site (with a navigator to help us find it!)

This year it is just Bobby doing the Coast to Coast, I really want to do it but am doing Redbull Defiance with my friend Lydia and then GODZone with Bobby and Tane in the Sneaky Weasel Gang. We are yet to find our other team member, so hands up?!
Mum and I will be support crewing for Bobby at Coast and we cant wait, we will just have to imagine dad there supporting like the pro he has the last 5 years.


So that brings me to info that I have been meaning to post for so long! After Coast to Coast 2018 I gathered the gear from the longest day and two day events and put it into a spreadsheet below. This info is really helpful for anyone involved in the Coast to Coast, new or elite, so please share it around. A discussion about the gear is welcomed! And maybe you can try something different if your gear isn’t working out. Just remember that everyone has their preference ūüôā

c2c gear 1 day 18 v1-1

c2c gear 2 day 18 v1

The main differences between the ‘one day’ and ‘two day’ events are that the one day are not allowed to draft on the bikes after the first ride. So a lot of them use triathlon style bike set ups with aero bars. In the two day you aren’t allowed aero bars and drafting is allowed in all the bike sections.

The other difference is in the one day the athlete hangs their bike at the top of the gravel road after the second bike ride. Then grab whatever footwear they like from their support crew to run down to the kayak. In the two day the athletes have no support crew at the top of the gravel and have to run with their bike down the gravel road. So where do shoes appear from? Athletes carry them in their pockets or wear mtb shoes for running or have cages/plates to pedal with their shoes on.

I also have nutrition details for the athletes above that I will post separately, however it is a bit messy so I need to figure out a way to best display it. One of the top 10 athletes in the Longest Day had KFC Potato and Gravy on the bike… any guesses who?



We had a busy year in 2017

So just a few lines of what we have done and where we have been ūüôā


Both did Port of Tauranga Half Ironman, Mount Maunganui

I did Redbull Defiance, Wanaka

Bobby did the Coast to Coast, I did it in a tandem team with mum.

We did GODZone together in team Bivouac Inov8, in Queenstown.

Bobby did Xterra, Rotorua

Both went to China for an adventure race.

Both went back to China for another two adventure races.

I finished my job as a project manager, we moved house and started our new contract milking job. (This was, and still is the hardest event.)

We spoke at the Fonterra end of season dinner.

I went to northern India and raced with team Skylotec at Expedition India.

I did Spring Challenge womens adventure race with the Sneaky Weasel Girls.

We both did Whaka 100 mountain bike race, Rotorua

We both did Whangamata 12 hour adventure race in team Dingo

Bobby did Southern Lakes 24 hour adventure race with the Sneaky Weasel Gang.

We became the new King and Queen of the Karioi trail run, Raglan.

Bobby got his big Crown at King of the Mount, Mt Maunganui

Whats in store for 2018?


Redbull Defiance, Bobby is racing with Hamish Flemming and I am with Matilda Lawrence.

Coast to Coast, both of us are doing the longest day individual.

Followed by a load more adventures, training, swearing and smiles ūüôā


Phew, sometimes we push it a bit too much and we question our sanity,  dream of quiet days with loads of time. But who are we kidding? We can do that when we are old!

Thank you everyone for your encouragement and support.

Our adventures wouldn’t be possible with the help of our families and friends and sponsors. Liv Cycling NZ, Cycle Obsession, Tailwind Nutrition NZ, Bivouac Outdoor, Restore Massage, Rob from Foot Traffic Coaching, Chris from Perimeter Coaching

Expedition India, what happened?

So what happened at Expedition India? I have been told the website didn’t have much information and that news of our team being pulled out of the race was first seen on Facebook. We have been racking our brains trying to figure out what went wrong as well. To an outsider it looks like we went too hard and blew up but that is far from true.

The transition onto the last trek was a casual one, we sipped coke and Jonas and I even had a shower. Then we walked up to the homestay in the blistering heat where we stopped for another two hours, slept 1:45 of it and had hot noodles, soup and eggs.

We headed up to base camp which was about 25km away and increasing about 500-1000m in elevation, so a gradual climb. We took our time and had rests along the way to catch our breath and eat and drink. It was the early hours of the morning when we were approaching the base camp and we were freezing, the temp was around -7¬įC and we did not have enough clothes. We thought we would have a rest at base camp and then continue over the pass and down to the finish, however when our oxygen saturation levels were testes we all failed. It had to be over 75 to continue and we were well below.

So that was it, race over and we had to head back 25km to the homestead. We couldn’t stay at base camp in hope of getting better, staying at altitude would only make us worse so we had to descend. We started walking back and Jonas was not in good shape, we were travelling 1km/hour and having to stop for 30 min naps. This walk could potentially take us 24 hours and not get low enough in elevation fast enough. We pushed the emergency beacon button and about half an hour after a guy came down from base camp. He asked us if we were ok and we said no, but he gave us two juice boxes and carried on his way, English wasn’t his best. We assumed that was the emergency help and we had no choice but to keep crawling along.

About 2km from the homestay we received help. Jonas and I got helicoptered off the mountain and taken to Hospital in Leh where we were treated overnight for low oxygen and Jonas had water in his lungs. Simon and Marten went to the homestay and then a car ride back around to Leh.

Was it the exposure to the heat on the way to the homestay and then our bodies freezing before the basecamp that made us have such low levels? Were we just simply not acclimatised for that height yet? I think it was a combination of both. And it sucks so much we weren’t allowed to carry on, really gutting. Especially when it is out of your control to do anything about it.

I must describe the hospital; we were taken to the tourist ward where there was a room of people on oxygen just because the town itself is at 3500m. We asked for a shower and no we weren’t allowed a shower because it is low oxygen, I think because of the humidity. Then I went to the toilet but there wasn’t any toilet paper, so I asked for some. No toilet paper, no tissues, no water, no food, no wifi. I pulled out money and begged for water from some sort of vending machine or something but no. The nurses said they give drugs only, everything else is BYO.


All of the things you are craving after finishing a race and we weren’t allowed. I pretty much got myself into the sink in the bathroom to have a wash, then the race organisers visited us and came with food and water, legends. I cant thank you Heidi enough, it was like you knew ūüôā ¬†Actually thank you Heidi and Steffan for organising a brilliant event and couple of weeks, I highly recommend the work that you do and can’t wait to come to Africa one day.

Thank you first to Corrinne and Skylotec for the opportunity. Bobby and his family for the extra work done on the farm without me. Also to my sponsors Liv Cycling NZ, Cycle Obsession, Tailwind Nutrition, Restore Massage, Bivouac, PowerSmart Solar and the team sponsors, Skylotec, OMM, MBT Footwear, 24hour Meals, Squeezy Sports Nutrition. We couldn’t do this demanding sport without you.

I’m now recovering from a horrible cold, feeding calves and then teaming up with Isla and Georgia for Spring Challenge this weekend. Girl time! At low altitude!

Photos by Jana Julian

Coast to Coast Top 10 Two Day Gear Review

Ok I’ve been meaning to get to this for a while but things have been very busy here on the farm with calves taking over every inch of shed space we have.
The gear used by the top 10 Two Day competitors in 2017:

the link to the pdf download is here C2C gear two day

One thing to note is the second day of the event is tricky because competitors first start on a road bike leg and then to get to the kayaks they have to run with their bike down a short gravel road. (the One Day competitors can rack their bikes at the top.) Keeping your bike shoes on would be a nightmare trying to run down in, so some competitors choose to use mountain bike shoes for this leg as they are a little easier to run in, or choose to carry a pair of shoes in their pockets and put them on. Also you have to take into consideration if you will be wearing anything on your feet in the kayak, which is the next leg..

There is a real mix of gear used but some similar shoes and run packs to the One Day competitors. The kayaks are noticeably more stable and the paddle lengths similar.
I hope this gives more of the entrants for this years Coast to Coast a bit of a shopping list and a starting point ūüôā

Any discussion is welcome, what gear are you planning on using for 2018?



Coast to Coast Top 10 Gear Review

Each year competitors stress about which gear to use for the Coast to Coast. Many people are purchasing for the first time, need direction on where to start, and some who have raced before are looking for an edge.
I have always been super keen on getting more people into multisport, especially to the start line of the Coast to Coast so I hope this helps you or someone you know on their way.

PDF Version: C2C gear

There are a few key points from this data. Firstly the bike choice for the men and women; the men almost all ride time trial bikes for all three legs. Whereas many women choose to ride a road bike for the first one or two legs and a TT bike for only the final 70km ride.

The hotly debated use of pedal plates for the first two rides is highlighted here : only six out of the twenty athletes have used them, are they quicker than triathlon shoes, or are multisporters now practicing triathlon style transitions, minimising the plate benefit?

Footwear is carried on in the next column for the mountain run and shows a wide range of brands and models. Shoe choice often comes down to personal preference and there may never be a ‚Äėbest performing‚Äô shoe for the run, however this chart provides a good list of shoes to try.

The running pack column is dominated by Ultimate Direction and Salomon. Some research will show that the packs used by these athletes are lightweight, comfortable to run in, have ample storage and easy access to food and drink.

Kayak choice can cause more of a headache for some people, especially if you are looking to go faster down the Waimakariri; you may be scanning this column and then going on Trademe to find they aren’t listed very often. However from seeing this list, which do you think is the¬†fastest kayak for the Waimak? – Taking all things into consideration.

In the men’s category the Flow MS2 is a popular paddle choice. Is the blade size for Sam, Sam and Sam larger than a MS2?  РLet me know as these three are extremely quick paddlers. Perhaps we will see this list next year with a whole lot of Jantex Gamma Small Plus listed.
In the women’s there is a tie between the Flow MS1 and Legend Small Fusion.

Finally the paddle length is interesting across the athletes and something we should consider more. You will see Sam Clark doesn’t have his shaft at a ridiculous length and the women hovering around 200cm.

Please add in the comments the gear you have used at the Coast to Coast. It is obvious there is no ‘one fits all’ and I think that is what I wanted to highlight here. If you are doing the Coast to Coast for the first time it doesn’t have to cost a fortune, there are so many options and second hand gear¬†works just fine.

Multisport Convoy
From the top: JKK Total Eclipse, Flow Rockstar, JKK Magnetar, Sharp 6


Well overdue update

We have actually been full on busy with work and life since Coast to Coast in Feb. I’ll do a quick recap of Coast and GODZone, some up coming China racing and then let you in on a BIG change that is coming and what we are really excited about!

Bobby’s Coast to Coast race was extraordinary, he had a really good day where most things went right. The fast pace off the start line was more to his liking that last year and the ride was decent enough to hurt the less cycling fit. A slow transition onto the mountain run but there wasn’t any falling over and kicking toes during the run this time. The beginning of the course was also marked and because it was only his second time over, this was a great help.
Unscathed from the run it was his plan to put a couple of extra minutes in the middle bike ride and short run down to the kayak as he knew the fast paddlers would be coming. But it wouldn’t be, even with a short swim he didn’t see anyone, he was actually on his own from part way through the run to the finish line! Good thing he spends a lot of time with his own company milking cows.
4th place in the most competitive field the coast to coast has ever seen, seriously epic Bobby!

I did the tandem with my mum and we had a good amount of fun and challenge. The run was really awesome to do together and we could chat and talk with other people along the way. Such as the stand up paddle board Irishman!

We elected to do the early start on the second day but this meant a sunrise straight into my eyes as we tried to navigate the first braids. This resulted in me getting out numerous times and re-positioning ourselves while mum sat like the queen in the back… love you mum.
The last ride was not so fun, the wind meant we couldn’t hear each other so there was little chatting. The roads were straight, flat and boring and it was a battle¬†but we made it ūüôā

Well done to everyone who completed the C2C!

It was then only two weeks until GODZone and the farm was dry as so Bobby was working his ass off trying to get enough feed out to our beautiful cows. My work has also been crazy busy so our spare time has been precious.

Back down south again and we were in Queenstown with Patrick and Ryan in team Bivouac Inov-8. And all the gear and food you can imagine for a few days of adventure racing.
We had a good race, it was fast, steep and short. A trekking based race and we made some cock ups on the first day which cost us sleep on the first night. This was noticeable among the other teams on the second day and we kept getting hammered by unfortunate events. The team was great, we really wanted it but just never fired, all the small things added up and we have heaps to work on for next time.
We¬†finished in one piece as a team on the long course in 7th place! Still the best placing I’ve ever had and finishing GODZone is a victory in itself every time.


From finishing GODZone to now has been resting, working our jobs like mad people and preparing for stage racing in China logistically and training wise.
The first China race is Baise and it is a 4 day stage race with offroad running, mountain biking, kayaking and other random activities.

We then come back from China and have Matt and Roses wedding in Wanaka. Then back to China for the Tai and Wengan stage races which are both three days.


Coming back on the 28th May and we will both be starting new jobs and a business together on the 1st June! ¬†(It is just down the road and involved lots more cows) But I will write more info soon ūüôā


Just getting Bobby sorted for xterra Rotorua tomorrow, one swim under his belt since the Port of Tauranga half, so he might have to do some wiggling once on the bike. Good prep for our upcoming races in China though.


2017-18 North Island Multisport Calendar

7-8 April               Mountains to Sea 18.5km run, 32km mtb, 62km road bike, 41km paddle, 14km run 34km cycle, 9km mtb

8 April                   Wild Kiwi 12km kayak, 25km mtb, 14km run

8 April                   Taranaki 6-hour adventure race

8 April                   The Generator 6km kayak, 6km run, 32km cycle, 12.5km mtb, 5km run

13 May                 The Nugget 32km cycle, 10km kayak, 10km cycle, 10km run, 23km mtb, 2.2km run

7 May                   Crazyman 13km kayak, 28km mtb, 13km run

20 May                 Opotiki 3, 6 12-hour adventure race

21 May                 Mangatautari Mission 32km cycle, 15km run, 15km cycle, 10km kayak

04 June                3D Multisport 9km kayak, 30km mtb, 10.5km run

10 June                Kawerau 6-hour adventure race

05 Aug                  Whangamata 3, 6, 12-hour adventure race

? Aug                     Coromandel Classic Day 1: 20km mtb, 27km run, 17km kayak. Day 2: 15km kayak, 30km bike, 21km run, 30km bike

17 Sept                 Cambridge to Hamilton Kayak Race 23km kayak

14 Oct                   Motu 65km mtb, 17km run, 52km cycle, 27km kayak, 8km cycle, 3km run

?                              South Head Challenge 11km kayak, 26km mtb, 10km run

5 Nov                    Rodney Coast 10km run, 20km cycle, 25km mtb, 8km kayak

? Nov                    Steelman 1.3km run, 33km cycle, 0.8km run, 8km kayak, 16.6 mtb, 12.6km run


Jan                         Rangitikei River Race

20-21 Jan             Red Bull Defiance

9-10 Feb              Coast to Coast 55km cycle, 33km run, 15km cycle, 67km paddle, 70km cycle

Out with the swimming and in with the Kayaking

Bobby raced to a massive PB on the weekend at the Port of Tauranga Half Ironman. The swim was a lot faster than other years but he also managed to shave off 7 precious minutes from his bike time over the 90km leg resulting in an overall 13 minute personal best.
This will be his second age group win in a row, and he was the first non elite competitor home, super amazing! We made a few changes to his bike for this race, getting his hydration and spares in a more aerodynamic place and also received a very appreciative donation of a disc and tri spoke to use from Hannah Lowe & family (thank you!)

He is looking at getting into a more aerodynamic body position so we will have a play around to see if he can make any more free speed gains. Or maybe he will just get sore and uncomfortable so will be back to the current position.

I completed the race also and was amazed about how much value you get for your entry fee:

  • Excellent registration and very professional with the various sponsor products on offer.
  • One of the best rego packs I have received¬†in ages, and a transponder that doesn’t cut your leg.
  • Racking my bike the night before felt a bit weird, but I knew it was so safe with all the security and fencing
  • A free swimming cap provided
  • The bike course had been swept so there was no trace of stones or glass. I ride along the course often and it was a dream to ride on Saturday.
  • Barely any cars as the road had been closed for the race
  • Drink bottles with water or electrolyte handed to me on the ride, this was new.
  • So many water stations on the run with coke, electrolyte and water.
  • And to top it all off there is even a tent at the finish for all athletes to enjoy complementary¬†sponsors food and bbq. Wendy Boyce it was a Rolls Royce race to me.

Cheers¬†Willie Bos and Jan Litchwark who taught me to always boot it down Marine Parade on a Thursday morning, there was a 1km TT split there which I had no idea about but it got me¬†a real life trophy, not a STRAVA one ūüėČ


So now just as I was beginning to get used to swimming we are hanging up the goggles and picking up the paddles to train for our next missions.

This weekend we have the Rangitiki river race, a super long paddle on a river just below Taihape with grade two rapids. It is excellent mental and bum training for the Coast to Coast and I highly recommend this for anyone in the North Island training for Coast.

A friend Kym Wilson recently contacted me as she needed a partner for RedBull defiance so I will be heading down for that for the weekend of the 21st, 22nd January. Anyone keen to go mountain biking between now and then let me know ūüôā

Bobby will be working his ass off on the farm as always while trying to squeeze in some running around the rocks at Maketu to Newdicks beach to train for the Coast to Coast.

Here are some pics from the weekend, we really appreciate all the cheering, it was super exciting coming round in the laps to see everyone.