Athletes from more than 50 countries have already signed up to participate in the World Masters Games 2017 from as far afield as Malawi, Spain, Iceland, Brazil, Switzerland and Indonesia.

Today, in celebrating the United Nations International Day of Sport for Development and Peace, World Masters Games 2017 Chief Executive Jennah Wootten said it was exciting to see registrations being received for all 28 sports, from so many diverse nations. The UN International Day of Sport for Development and Peace recognises the transformative power of sport and its great potential in advancing positive social change.

“This is the first time for Auckland as host city, and we’re just over a year away from welcoming the world to our door.  The Games are all about camaraderie – people coming together for the love of sporting competition – and this day gives us a chance to reflect on the unifying power of sport within our culture,” Ms Wootten said.

The World Masters Games is the world’s largest multi-sport event by participation numbers, and will be held in Auckland from 21-30 April 2017. Endorsed by the International Olympic Committee, its purpose is to encourage people to retain their passion for sport through life as a pathway to health and wellbeing, friendship and understanding.

“Our target is to attract 25,000 competitors from 100 countries, and we are on the way to achieving this goal,” Ms Wootten said. “We hope half the total number of athletes will come from within New Zealand, so we’re also encouraging kiwis to pick a sport and have a go. You don’t need to be good at sport, just come and enjoy the vibe.”

For more information, to register or volunteer, visit www.worldmastersgames2017.co.nz.

ends

For further information please contact: sheryl.nichols@wmg2017.co.nz

NOTE:

About World Masters Games 2017

The World Masters Games is the largest multi-sport event in the world.  In terms of athlete numbers, it is bigger in scale than even the Olympics.  Auckland will host the event from 21 to 30 April 2017 during which time 25,000 athletes will compete in 28 sports across 45 competition venues.  The Games are regarded as the largest event New Zealand will host in at least the next decade.  For more information visit www.worldmastersgames2017.co.nz.

WMG2017 seeks to deliver $36 million GDP and 250,000 visitor nights to Auckland’s economy and $53 million GDP and 266,000 visitor nights to the wider New Zealand economy. The Government ($11 million) and Auckland Tourism Events and Economic Development ($11.75 million) have invested approximately two thirds of the $35.85 million required to stage the event with the remainder to come from registration fees ($8.5 million) and commercial sponsorship ($4.6 million).

About Barfoot & Thompson

Barfoot & Thompson is the presenting partner for World Masters Games 2017.  It is New Zealand’s largest, privately owned real estate company and is still run by the Barfoot and Thompson families after more than 90 years.  Barfoot & Thompson consistently sells around one in three homes in the Auckland region and manages more than 11,000 rental properties, well ahead of competitor brands.  For more information visit www.barfoot.co.nz.

About the World Masters Games 2017 valued partners

World Masters Games 2017 would like to thank its valued partners:  Barfoot & Thompson, Auckland Tourism, Events and Economic Development (ATEED), Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment (MBIE), International Masters Games Association (IMGA), Air New Zealand SKYCITY Auckland, Pita Pit, Volvo Cars New Zealand, NZCT, Brian Perry Charitable Trust.