The World Heli Challenge Lives!

Seattle, WA (March 25, 2008) – New Zealand’s World Heli Challenge is set to return this August 9th through the 24th, 2008 after a six-year hiatus. Representing the best of the best, the World Heli Challenge invites seven top-notch snowboard brands and seven world-class ski brands from around the globe, featuring two elite athletes each, to come head to head amidst the many peaks that create New Zealand’s Mt. Cook National Park.

Three days of helicopter-accessed competition will go down over this two-week period, allowing for perfect weather and snow conditions for the Big Mountain, Backcountry Freestyle, and Downhill heats to take place. The Big Mountain portion consists of charging down 3000 feet of terrain with a 50-degree slope average over cliffs and couloirs, pushing the athletes beyond their known limits. The Backcountry Freestyle realm allows athletes the ultimate in self-expression, showcasing their best aerial maneuvers utilizing the many natural terrain features available on the way down. And the Downhill is just that … an en masse assault down 3000 feet of vertical – no rules, first one down wins!

In addition to the competition, the athletes are treated to an onslaught of adrenaline-pumping activities during the surrounding down-days, incorporating jet boating, bungee jumping, golfing, surfing, mountain biking and everything else New Zealand is renowned for in the world of adventure and excitement. This event, like no other, puts the freeride ski and snowboard scene on center stage and shows what it takes in mental, physical and logistical preparation for every athlete involved.

The World Heli Challenge Title is awarded to the overall winner of the combined three events, one for ski and one for snowboard, earning that individual tremendous bragging rights and huge international kudos. Past winners have included skiers Chris Davenport, Kent Kreitler, Andrea Binning, Seb Michaud and Guerlain Checerit, and snowboarders Matt Goodwill, Karleen Jeffery, Gilles Voirol, Steve Grahame and David Pujol. New for 2008, there will also be a World Heli Challenge Title awarded to the best overall snowboard brand and ski brand at the end of competition.

Finally, finishing the two weeks off in style, thousands of people will gather in Wanaka to celebrate the “Afterburner Party,” an event in and of itself. For all details surrounding the World Heli Challenge, go to www.worldhelichallenge.com.

At the center of the storm is Tony “Harro” Harrington, a world-class surfer and skier turned award-winning producer and photographer who travels the globe chasing the “perfect storm,” while bringing the world’s best surf and snow athletes along for the rides of their lives. From the creation of the World Heli Challenge in New Zealand to over 120 magazine covers and numerous global awards, Harro has always been on the cutting edge of what is humanly possible. The result is some of the best adventure and action sports content in the world. Home for Harro is a mixed bag of locales from Australia and New Zealand to Hawaii, Alaska and Jackson Hole. For more on Harro and his whereabouts, check out www.wheresharro.com.


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