100% Pure New Zealand Winter Games has a brand new look and feel for 2011, and this is highlighted in the new web site launched this week. Designed to be a one-stop portal for athletes and spectators, the site will keep visitors up to date with the latest news and developments in the lead-up to the largest winter sports event in the Southern Hemisphere.
Winter Games NZ CEO, Arthur Klap, said the site echoed the evolution of the event since the hugely successful inaugural Games in 2009. "The first Winter Games NZ changed the face of competitive snow sports, for the first time providing elite athletes with a world class multi discipline event in the lead-up to the Winter Olympics,” he said. “This was proven by the number of medals (10) won by Winter Games competitors which included the entire snowboard halfpipe podium".
Expanding on the successful inaugural event in 2009, 100% Pure New Zealand Winter Games, will feature 16 days (13-28 August 2011) of snow and ice sports and is expected to attract over 1,000 elite athletes from throughout the world to the Southern Alps.
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.
Dunedin will again be the ice sports centre and will see an increase in events with the inclusion of speed skating in the ice programme. In addition, the ice hockey tournament will feature four international teams in a round robin play-off while figure skating will open the Games on 13 August 2011. The ice programme is rounded out by the curling programme in Naseby, Maniototo which has been extended to include mixed pairs.
Another new addition is Winter Triathlon at Snow Farm, near Wanaka which was a demonstration event at the 2009 Winter Games. Snow Farm will also host the adaptive and able-bodied cross-country.
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.
Central and local government supporters of 100% Pure New Zealand Winter Games are New Zealand Major Events, SPARC, Tourism New Zealand, Dunedin City Council, Queenstown Lakes District Council, Christchurch City Council, Lake Wanaka Tourism, Destination Queenstown, Tourism Dunedin, Christchurch & Canterbury Tourism and Ashburton District Tourism.
As well as including information on these new developments, photo galleries and travel information, during Winter Games NZ the web site will feature live webcasts and real time scoring, keeping followers around the world up to date with the competition.