Wānaka Sun       

Red Bull Defiance cancelled without explanation

Posted at 6:00am Friday 03 Jan, 2020 | By Ollie Blyth journalist@thewanakasun.co.nz

One of Wānaka's big multisport events of the 2020 calendar year, Red Bull Defiance, has been cancelled without any explanation, and the competitors enrolled are understandably unsatisfied. The adventure racing event, which was scheduled to take place in the Upper Clutha area on March 28-29, involved kayaking, mountain biking, abseiling, and clay pigeon shooting. 

With registrations having opened in early July of this year, many athletes had already put in large amounts of time, training, and money which has now gone virtually down the drain. 

Just before Christmas, the event organisers contacted all competitors to,"regretfully inform you that Red Bull Defiance, due to be held in Wānaka, New Zealand from the 28-29th of March, is postponed for 2020." Competitors were instead offered discounted entry into the Red Bull Defiance event in Australia in August next year. Full refunds of registration fees will be given to the athletes, but many have already booked flights and accommodation. 

On social media, competitor Paul Dawson said that they were really looking forward to the event but now didn't know what to do with $1,000 worth of flights, “Personally I'm not very impressed with the level of professionalism displayed by the organisers with their ‘just a quick note' email and the lack of supporting information either by email, or on [the Red Bull Defiance Facebook page], or on the event website.”

Josh Symons agreed, “Really disappointing is a massive understatement. Competitors have poured a lot of time, sweat, and money into preparing, the email was flat out disrespectful. An explanation for why it's been cancelled isn't asking for much.”

Red Bull has yet to announce the cancellation publicly on either their website or Facebook page, further confusing competitors as to the reasons for the abrupt decision.



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