Entry Info

2019 Dates

We are incredibly excited The Pioneer will be returning from 1 - 6 December 2019. 


Entry Fee Inclusions

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 Your entry fee includes the following services;  

  • Race Entry to the six-day mountain bike stage race
  • Tent accommodation in the Pioneer Race Village for five nights (1st, 2nd, 3rd, 4th, 5th December). One two-man tent per rider is provided to allow for gear bag and mattress. Tented accommodation includes set-up and pack-down of tent each day.
  • Some meals, including breakfast and dinner in The Pioneer Race Village
  • The Pioneer Race Village amenities including showers, toilets and social lounge
  • Timing, prize money and prizes
  • Daily Awards at the end of each stage
  • On course nutrition including a recovery pack at the end of each stage
  • Daily check points on course to track all riders  
  • Transport of The Pioneer gear bag between host towns
  • Race medical services on course and free on-site basic treatment in the Race Village
  • Basic mechanical services on course and in the Race Village. Additional costs may be charged depending on what is required
  • Daily results service
  • Bike wash and security in each Pioneer Race Village
  • Awards Ceremony Dinner on the final day of racing 
  • Marmot 110L gear bag
  • The Pioneer day bag
  • The Pioneer drink bottles x 2
  • The Pioneer finisher t-shirt (must finish event)
  • The Pioneer finisher’s medal (must finish event)
  • Photography service (competitor photographs can be purchased after the event)

What your entry fee does not include:

  • Lunches while in Pioneer race villages
  • Sleeping mattress and sleeping bag - please bring your own

Entry Fees

All entry fees are per person. This means team members are not guaranteed the same entry fee price as each person must register individually.

The entry price will increase once the number of available entries in that category have sold out, or by the stated closing date - whichever comes first. 


80 Riders OR
14 February - 28 March


200 Riders OR
29 March - 17 June


200 Riders OR
18 June - 6 October


200+ Riders
7 October - 13 November   
Price Price incl 3% Active Fee  Price Price incl 3% Active Fee Price Price incl 3% Active Fee Price Price incl 3% Active Fee
$2,900 $2,987 $3,150 $3,244.50 $3,400 $3,502 $3,650 $3,759.50








* All Entry Fees are in $NZD




Registration requires one team member to register first as the team captain, and the other team member to then join a team.

Step One: Team Captain Registration. When registering as the team captain, you will be required to "create a team" name and password under the Team Information heading. Once you have successfully entered as team captain, please inform your team mate of the team name and password.

Step Two: Team Member Registration. When the second rider registers, they are required to register as a team member. As part of their registration process, they will need to select "join a team" under the Team Information heading, and here they will need to search for your team by name, select the team and then enter the password.

The Team Member must register within 10 days of the Team Captain entering.  Once both successfully entered, you will be registered as a team within the registration system.

Payment Plan

We understand that making the commitment to enter The Pioneer is a big investment, so we would like to offer the following payment option that eliminates having to front up with the total entry fee all in one go! The part payment option is as follows:

  • Part payment is available for a finite period, opening 14 February 2019 and closing midnight, 1 May 2019.
  • A $1,000 NZD deposit is required upon registration. The remaining balance is required in three instalments on 30 May 2019, 30 June 2019, 30 July 2019 (Note: all instalment payments will incur a 3% Active fee).
  • If a rider requests a refund prior to the completion of all payment instalments, upon requesting a refund, riders will be eligible for a 50% refund of their total payments to date. If all entry fee payments have been made, the normal refund policy applies.

Add-on packages

Please note, you can book any Add-on Packages while entering, or at a later date through your MyEvents account. All packages are subject to availability. We recommend you place an order early to avoid disappointment. 

Book Here

Add-on packages

Mechanical Package $450


Bike Therapy will be back in 2019. The Mechanical package provides you the opportunity to drop your bike to the Bike Therapy tent after each day of racing, where a dedicated team of mechanics will wash your bike thoroughly and give it a full service each night (this includes approximately 1.5 hours per night of dedicated attention to your bike). As well, the Bike Therapy team will build your bike for you pre-race to help reduce the stress of travel and race preparation. You will be charged extra for suspension repairs (including seatposts) and any parts associated with each repair. Bookings must be made prior to October 31. 



Full Supporter Package $600


We know some of you would love to share your Pioneer experience with your family or support team. So we have developed a package that enables them to do everything with you - except the ride! The Full Supporter package allows one friend or family member to stay with you in The Pioneer Race Village. Included in this package is breakfast (2 Dec - 6 Dec), dinner (1 Dec - 6 Dec, including Awards Ceremony Dinner), access to all Race Village amenities, and tented accommodation (x 1 two man tent per person). Tented accommodation includes set-up and pack-down each day. Supporters must bring their own mattress and sleeping bag. No transport is provided between Race Villages.

Supporter Parking Pass FREE

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In order to park your supporter vehicle in our designated parking areas at/or near the Pioneer Race Villages you must register their vehicle with us (at no cost) and display a Pioneer PARKING PASS at all times. Please note there will only be space for the car and NO camping beside the car is available in this space. 

Supporter Catering-Only $380


The Supporter Catering-Only package allows your supporter to join you in the Race Village for meals. Included in this package is breakfast (2 Dec - 6 Dec) and dinner (1 Dec - 6 Dec, including Awards Ceremony Dinner) for each day in the Race Village. This is a good option if you are travelling with supporters in motorhomes.

Massage Package $250 / $300


A team of qualified masseuses will be on-site at The Pioneer Race Village. There are two Massage packages available: a 5 day package (1 - 5 Dec) for $250 and a 6 day package (1 - 6 Dec) for $300. Both packages include 1 x 25 minute appointment per day and must be pre-purchased. If you haven’t pre-purchased and there is an available appointment you may be able to make a booking on the spot or for later that evening. This can be made at the Info Desk in the Social Zone.

Laundry Service $50


Don’t worry about going to the river to wash your kit, we'll take care of that for you! The laundry service includes a Pioneer branded washing bag for you to keep and two laundry washes during race-week on Monday 2 December and Wednesday 4 December. The drop off and collection point for all laundry will be at the Info Desk, located inside the Social Zone at the Race Village. Service must be pre-purchased.


Motorhome Parking Site $200.00


If you would prefer a bit more comfort, there is the option to book a motorhome site in the Pioneer Motorhome Zone. This is a great option for your supporter and includes full use of the Race Village amenities (showers, toilets and social lounge) and parking for ONE motorhome.

Please note: sites are not powered and each package is limited to a maximum occupancy of two supporters (in addition to the riders). There is no max occupancy for riders without support people). Meals are not included in this package for your supporter, however you are able to purchase the Supporter Catering-Only Package, so they can enjoy dining with you in The Pioneer Race Village. Limited bookings available.

For those teams with motorhomes and no support person to drive the motorhome between Race Villages, we may be able to supply a driver. This must be requested by email to pioneer@ironman.com NO LATER than 1 Nov.

Motorhome Accommodation On Enquiry


The Motorhome Accommodation package includes motorhome hire and a parking site at Race Villages. There are 5, 6 or 7 night options available to fit in with your plans pre and post event. The motorhomes will be either a Frontier or Vista model (6 berth) and will include up to two drivers, comprehensive insurance, and extras if required (e.g. table, chairs, portable heater).

Booking must be made prior to July 31, after which these will be subject to pricing and availability. Max occupancy rules given in the Motorhome Parking Site package apply.

Email pioneer@ironman.com for further information on the package.

Pre-Race Accommodation SOLD OUT


The pre-race accommodation package offers a room & breakfast at the Novotel Queenstown (double occupancy) before the start of your Pioneer adventure. This package also includes a welcome Gift and Prologue transport from Novotel to the start line on the 1st December. There are two options available, a two-day package (29 Nov- 1 Dec) for $850, or a three-day package (28 Nov- 1 Dec) for $1260. 




The post-race accommodation package offers a room & breakfast at the Novotel Queenstown (double occupancy) at the conclusion of your Pioneer adventure. This package also includes a welcome Gift and awards ceremony transport between the finish line and Novotel. There are two options available, a two-day package (6 - 8 Dec) for $780, or a three-day package (6 - 9 Dec) for $1160. 


Transport to Prologue $30

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Includes transport to the Prologue at Moke Lake on Sunday 1 December from central Queenstown. Shuttles will depart from Athol Street carpark, and you will be allocated a departure time based on your Prologue start time (to be released 2 weeks prior to the event). Your bike and 110L Marmot gear bag is to be taken with you on the transport. Limited bookings available.

Transport to Alexandra $60

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Includes transport from the finish line of Stage 1 at Wilcox Green in Arrowtown to the Race Village in Alexandra on Monday 2 December. The cost is $60 and includes transport of your bike. Limited bookings available.

Transport to Awards Ceremony $25

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Includes return transport from Arrowtown or Queenstown to the Awards Ceremony on Friday 6 December. The Arrowtown pick-up/drop-off point is the bus stop on Ramshaw Lane, while Queenstown is Athol St. Limited bookings available.

Awards Ceremony Dinner Ticket $40

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For riders wishing to purchase tickets for their supporters to attend the Awards Ceremony Dinner. Please note, the 'Full Supporter' and 'Supporter Catering Only' packages include entry to the Awards Ceremony Dinner. The ceremony will be on Friday 6 December at 7:00pm, at Queenstown Events Centre. Tickets cost $40 for adults and $20 for children (aged 9 and under).

Conditions of Participation

The Pioneer Mountain Bike Stage race is open to aspiring amateur and professional mountain bikers from around the world. Entrants must be 18 years of age as at Day 1 of the race. The race features challenging distances and terrain including lots of climbing. It is the rider’s responsibility to arrive at the event with the necessary fitness and stamina level to participate.

All riders are required to sign a waiver form when entering.

Mandatory Gear

The mandatory gear list contains what we believe is the absolute minimum to keep you safe in the alpine environment. The weather is very unpredictable in the high country, a front can blow in and out of the mountains very quickly.

Unlike some other global mountain bike stage races, this is a remote back country event where protection from the elements and medical/support services could be some time/distance from riders needing assistance. It is therefore imperative that the mandatory gear is carried at all times. A Gear check will be carried out initially at Rider Registration on both your mandatory basic gear and your mandatory emergency gear. Random checks will be made at the start chute each morning and at any time during the race.

Should you need to purchase gear in Queenstown on arrival, click here to find a list of stores you could visit. 

Mandatory Basic Gear

These mandatory and extra gear requirements need to be suitable for you if you are riding or stationary due to injury or the race is stopped for any reason. Must be carried on every stage, and is subject to change up until race day:

  • A helmet
  • Beanie or buff (buff must be wool/merino)
  • Windproof jacket with sleeves (a hood is optional but recommended)
  • Tool kit – 1 per team
    • Must contain two spare tubes (if using tubeless ensure sealant is refreshed every 2 months and carry at least 1 tube as an emergency back-up), a bike pump, a multi-tool, tyre levers, patch kit and a chain breaker (that you know how to use). A speed link/spare chain link is also useful
  • First Aid kit – 1 per team
    • Including bandages, plasters, tape, gauze, whistle and two survival blankets. We also recommend carrying pain relief medication (e.g. Panadol) for headaches, sunscreen and electrolyte replacement powder (e.g. Gastrolyte) for cramps (Cramp Stop Spray is recommended), along with other medications you might need (e.g. prescription or hay fever medication).

Additional Mandatory Gear

The Additional Gear will only be used if advised by Race Organisers at the Race Briefing the night before or on the morning of each race day. This will be in cases of impending weather or climate changes.

  • Long sleeve thermal torso layer
  • Warm tights (merino or polypropylene) or leg warmers
  • Full fingered gloves
  • Waterproof jacket - with tape sealed seams including a hood and sleeves.


Entry Policies

Online entries close on 13 November 2019, unless sold out prior.


If a registered team wishes to cancel their participation in the event for whatever the reason, the team must notify IRONMAN Oceania in writing via pioneer@ironman.com, providing his/her name, team name and contact details. 

Cancellation requests received up until midnight, 1 August 2019 will receive 50% refund of their entry fee. Entry refunds requested from 2 August 2019 until midnight, 30 September 2019 will receive 25% of their entry fee. Entry fees are non-refundable from 1 October 2019. 

All additional purchases are non-refundable.

If the event, or any part thereof, is cancelled, postponed, shortened, or modified in any way, or if any of the amenities, goods, or services in relation to the event are no longer provided, whether due to force majeure, legal restrictions, disputes, safety reasons, failure by service providers to perform, or any other reason or cause, the entry fees and all other fees paid will not be refundable.


A rider change can be made up until midnight, 13 November 2019. A $150 Rider transfer fee will be charged to the withdrawing rider. The receiving rider will need to pay for the entry fee in order for the transfer to process, then the original rider will be refunded their entry fee less the $150 transfer fee per rider.

To carry out the process the current rider needs to:

  • Go to myevents.active.com and log in to their active.com account
  • Find the registration they wish to transfer and click the link ‘Transfer the registration to another rider’
  • Follow the necessary steps
  • A $150 transfer fee will be charged to the withdrawing rider.  
  • Please note: the receiving rider will need to pay the entry fee (at the rate of the original rider) at the time of the transfer in order for the transfer to process, then the original rider will be refunded their entry fee less the $150 transfer fee.
  • Please note: add-on packages/services purchased are neither transferable nor refundable.


A full team change can be made up until midnight, 13 November 2019.  If an unregistered team wishes to take over the entry of a registered team, a double rider change can be performed in the online profile. The above costs and dates are applicable.


Entry Deferral

  • Riders who register within the first 60 days of registrations opening (14 February 2019 – midnight, 15 April 2019) will be eligible for a deferral to the 2020 Pioneer event.  
  • Requests for deferral will be honored up to 45 days out (midnight, Thursday 17 October 2019) from the 2019 event (1 December 2019). The deferral may only be used once, and only for the Pioneer 2020 event. Riders who elect to defer their entry forfeit any partial refund or ability to transfer this entry.
  • Riders must have paid the entry fee in full to be eligible for a deferral
  • All deferrals will incur a $150 processing fee, which is charged when you re-register for the following year's event. The deferral fee is per rider, not per team.
  • All additional purchases are non-deferrable and non-refundable


Entry Categories

The Pioneer has seven different race categories, the age of the youngest team rider determines the race category: 

  1. Open Men: Both riders are male.
  2. Open Women: Both riders are female.
  3. Mixed: One rider is male and one rider is female.
  4. Masters Men (40+): Both riders are male 40 years or older on 31 December of the year of the race.
  5. Masters Women (40+): Both riders are female 40 years or older on 31 December of the year of the race.
  6. Grand Masters Men (50+): Both riders are male 50 years or older on 31 December of the year of the race.
  7. Grand Masters Men (60+)*: Both riders are male 60 years or older on 31 December of the year of the race.

* A minimum number of 5 teams will be required to enter this category to make it competitive. If this number is not reached all teams currently within the category will be rolled into the lower age category.


Daily Awards: a daily awards ceremony is held at the end of each day in the Race Village. This will include the awarding of the ‘leaders jersey’ in each age category with the fastest cumulative time for both team members after each day. In addition to this, prizes will be awarded for daily stage winners in each category.

The Final Prize giving will be held in Queenstown, prizes will be awarded to 1st, 2nd, 3rd in each age category and the below prize money will be awarded to the overall winners. 



Overall Men's Winning Team

NZD $5,000
Overall Women's Winning Team NZD $5,000
Overall Mixed Winning Team NZD $5,000


The overall winners in each age group category will be the team with the fastest cumulative time for both team members over the 6 days of racing. 

Leader Jerseys

Open Men

LeaderJersey Yellow

Open Women

LeaderJersey Orange


LeaderJersey Red

Masters Men 40+

LeaderJersey Green



Masters Women 40+

LeaderJersey Green

Grand Masters Men 50+

LeaderJersey Blue