Next month the XTERRA Trail Challenge is back in the trail running goldmine of Waihi. Over 600 entrants are expected to take to the trails on Saturday 13th October 2012.
While there is a plenty of interest and entries in all of the distance options, for the first time this year, an Ultra Marathon has been added to the event stable.
On the start line will be ultra-marathon runner, Grant Guise who is hoping to continue his winning form this year.
Fresh off a win at the aptly named, Death Race, in Canada Guise is looking forward to being one of the first to run over the Waihi.
"I have spent a tiny amount of time around Waihi once before (before I got back into running) and after seeing the photos from last year's race I was thinking it looking like the kind of race I would enjoy- rough and technical terrain. As soon as I heard about the 60km option I booked my flights."
While the 60km will be hard going, it has been dubbed the ‘Kaimai Killer' by some, it won't be comparable to Guise's experience at the Death Race in Canada.
"I had been there last year so knew what to expect, more or less, but no matter how you prepare 125km is hard! The toughest thing for me was the heat. It was only around 25-28 degrees, but coming from freezing temps and snow covered trails in Castle Hill it was a big shock."
As well as the 60km Ultra Marathon, the event includes a 7.3km and 13km run or walk option and 19km and 42.2km run events.
Entrants from around the country have already entered, something Guise isn't surprised about, he says there is a lot to look forward to.
"Running somewhere new is great and you always make new friends."
In regards to his own race, Guise is looking forward to the competition and then a bit of R&R.
"I am sure there will be a strong field, so hopefully we can have some good hard racing at the front (assuming I am anywhere near the front of course!!) Post race we are going to go camp at Waihi Beach for a few nights so that will be fun also."
For more information on the XTERRA Trail Challenge Waihi go to www.trailrun.co.nz