PWC ‘FUNdraiser’ aims to raise $60,000-$70,000 for Melanoma

23 Jan 2013

Yamaha Motor New Zealand is proud to be the leading sponsor of the inaugural Yamaha Melanoma Foundation Ski-nZ. An adrenalin packed challenge for PWC owners, which will see them travel from Tauranga to the Bay of Islands over a period of 6 days. The FUNdraiser is set to raise between $60,000 and $70,000 for the Melanoma Foundation of New Zealand.

The idea, which is modelled on similar events in Australia, is the brainchild of PWC world record holder and dedicated melanoma campaigner Jeremy Burfoot.

The 600-kilometre Yamaha Melanoma Foundation Ski-NZ 2013 challenge will see competitors cover 100km each day, along some of the most picturesque coastline in the country.

Starting with registration, a briefing and a welcome barbecue in Tauranga on Sunday, March 3, the Yamaha Melanoma Foundation Ski-NZ 2013 will consist of six, 100-kilometre legs, finishing at Russell in the Bay of Islands.

“On Monday we leave Tauranga and head to Whitianga, with stops at Slipper Island and Pauanui,” explains Burfoot. “The next day, we head first to Great Mercury Island and then around Cape Colville to Coromandel Town.

“On Wednesday, we visit Waiheke Island and Auckland before stopping at Takapuna for ‘auction night’. Thursday sees us off to Kawau and Omaha, before enjoying at half day at some of Matakana’s finest wineries.

“Friday’s voyage is from Omaha to Marsden Cove for ‘seafood night’ and our final leg is to Russell, via the famous Hole in the Rock off Cape Brett. The event finishes with ‘Last Night Madness’, a big celebration for everyone involved, in Russell.”

Burfoot describes the event as a unique combination of “fun and FUNdraising”.

 “While it will certainly be a great adventure, there is a serious side to it too.”

Burfoot explains that entrants are each required to raise a minimum of $1500 in tax deductible sponsorship.

“We are encouraging participants to compete with each other to see who can raise the most sponsorship dollars,” he says. All proceeds raised through these sponsorships will go direct to the Melanoma Foundation of New Zealand.

With safety in mind, participants are required to take part on a well-maintained, sit-down PWC that is no older than 2005. In keeping with the event’s “awareness of melanoma” and safety messages, participants are required to wear a lifejacket, full face helmet, eye protection, gloves, shoes and a full length rash suit or wet suit for protection from the sun. Organisers are also encouraging those entering to carry a personal locator beacon.

At the end of each leg, the PWCs will be trailered on shore, so participants will also require some type of “shore crew” to follow the event by road.

Although entering the 2013 Yamaha Melanoma Foundation Ski-NZ clearly requires a substantial amount of commitment, Burfoot is confident at least 45 riders will take part next March.

“We already have 15 entrants committed, three of whom are coming over from Australia especially for the event. We have also had expressions of interest from four UK riders and from a number of other Australians.”

Burfoot, a melanoma survivor who set two world records on his Yamaha VX18R WaveRunner (for the fastest 1000km on a PWC and for the longest distance travelled on a PWC in six hours) will be taking part, as will Yamaha’s Brendan Grant.

“I strongly encourage as many PWC owners and enthusiasts as possible to join us,” he says.

“If you are an adrenalin junkie or just love cruising around some of New Zealand’s most iconic spots with a like-minded group of adventurers, then the 2013 Yamaha Melanoma Foundation Ski-NZ is the ‘must-do’ event of 2013.”


For further information, please contact:

Jeremy Burfoot
Melanoma Foundation of NZ
Phone: (09) 4763-496  
Mobile: (021) 213-2056


Greg Fenwick
Yamaha Motor NZ Ltd
Phone: (09) 966-1350
Mobile: (021) 926-927


Please click the link below to watch the Ski NZ promotional video

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