Richie McCaw and the Cure Kids team have crossed the finish line at GODZone Chapter Five.
Rob Nichol, Sarah Fairmaid, Ben Meyer and McCaw took five days and one hour to race
539km through Nelson/Tasman.
They crossed the finish line in Kaiteriteri at exactly midday with hundreds of supporters
cheering them on as they paddled onto the beach.
Among them was eight-year-old Kade from Nelson who handed Richie $10 to donate to
Cure Kids. Kade was left pretty speechless by the encounter with his idol, saying: “That was pretty
The team have trekked, biked and paddled their way through three national parks, tackling
white water rapids and climbing high into the stunning scenery.
Richie said: “There were some times out there I really questioned what I was doing and why
I was there but you get to the finish line and you remember.
“Last night during that 140km bike ride there were a whole load of kids cheering us on, 3.30
this morning they were out and offering us Easter eggs and stuff as we rode passed. It was
“Cure Kids is a big reason to do this, we want to do this for ourselves, we want to challenge
ourselves but to be able to do something good, to be able to do that is pretty cool.”
Asked if he would do the race again, Richie said: “I wouldn’t say no. Probably a couple of
times in the middle of it I thought I’ll never do this again but I’d think about it.”
Rob Nichol and Sarah Fairmaid said the group came together as a team over the course of
the last five days.
Rob said: “We came together, we all had a passion to do this event and to raise money for
Cure Kids – that campaign has been fantastic, we’ve raised so much for charity.”
Sarah added: “These guys are great, I always thought our strength would be working as a
team, we’ve become really good friends over this last week and it’s been a really great
experience for us.”
They have raised $295,500 for Cure Kids, which funds research into improving child health.
One of the things they fund is research into growing full-thickness human skin from a
patients’ cells to be transplanted onto burn victims.
Charity ambassador Jorja Sharp hopes the research will mean less painful transplants for
burn victims like herself.
She said: “Cure Kids have been a huge part of my life and I absolutely love the work they do. Not only
have they helped make my confidence grow and taken me into the Cure Kids family, they are doing vital
research to help my condition, which will mean less operations that will be less painful.
“For me and my family it is great to know that they are working hard, so that the next child affected by
burns doesn’t need to go through what I went through. Please support and congratulate the Cure Kids
GODZone team on their challenge, so that Cure Kids can continue to fund this great work.”
You can donate $3 by texting GODZone to 933 or go online to donate more.
Stage 1 Coasteer and sea kayak from Kaiterteri to Rabbit Island (30km): 3.55
Stage 2 Mountain bike orienteering and ride through Richmond Range (60km): 8.32
Stage 3 Trek through Red Hills (52km): 31.20
Stage 4 Mountain bike and foot orienteering through Rotoiti (47km): 6.14
Stage 5 Paddle Lake Rotoroa and trek over Mole Tops (34km): 16.39
Stage 6 Canoe down Matakitaki River (50km): 9.31
Stage 7 Mountain bike through Nuggety to Owen Valley (34km): 3.06
Stage 8 Trekking through Mt Owen (35km): 22.15
Stage 9 Mountain bike through Rameka to Totaranui (140km): 14.12
Stage 10 Sea kayak down Abel Tasman coast to Kaiteriteri (35km): 5.12
Cure Kids is a big reason to do this, we want to do this for ourselves, we want to challenge ourselves but to be able to do something good, to be able to do that is pretty cool.- Richie McCaw