We are thrilled to announce that Craig will be joining Team NZBLUE on our adventure as we embark on Race Across America!
In 2019, he took on the challenge of Race across America solo, where he finished 4th overall in his rookie year. Over the years, Craig Harper has slowly established himself as one of New Zealand's leading ultra-endurance athletes.
Since then, Craig has continued to challenge himself on the bike, as well as further develop his interest in the mindset and mental challenges that are so important in Ultra-Cycling.
Recently, we asked Craig about his experience as a previous RAAM finisher.
This is what he said:
Tell us about yourself, your strengths and your experience:
''I’m a father of 2 girls, husband, and builder by trade. I have enjoyed competitive sports my whole life, from local to international level. I really enjoy the challenge of building a high-performance team, but equally, enjoy testing myself as an individual. My younger years taught me the importance of commitment and hardwork. My latter years have taught me how self-belief and perspective are necessary to be content.''
Why have you chosen to participate as crew for Team NZBLUE?
''I was asked to be involved I guess based on my experience in 2019 as a Solo RAAM finisher. That campaign taught me so many things. I was grateful to have the support of a very experienced and knowledgeable crew and we achieved something not many RAAM rookies do. RAAM is a very unique beast that tests riders any different ways. Personally, I only know Aaron, but am keen to help the team with race specific advice and be part of the unique relay division of this brutal physical, mental, logistical and geographical challenge.''
What is your advice for the team as a previous racer:
''Succeeding at RAAM is all about preparation. The riders need to make their training as hard as they can, ensuring it is specific and relative to their needs. Have a sound nutrition and hydration plan. Have contingencies for all situations. Learn how to recover quickly. Be comfortable being uncomfortable. Be adaptable. Know that when things are tough, they will get better. There will be highs and lows. Know that the mind is stronger than the body. Be present. Slow is better than stopped. And, always remember you have 3 choices:
Give it all you’ve got''
Can you include a quote that encapsulates your experience as a previous RAAM finisher?
Sure can - check this out - https://youtu.be/obYKh8QbgKw
We are very lucky to have Craig travel with us and we know that he will help to inspire the team and keep us as prepared as possible in the lead-up and during the race.
For information on how you can sponsor Team NZBLUE to raise $100,000 for NZ Children and Youth charities, please visit our charities page on our website.