50-year-old woman from Auckland named as IronMāori competitor who died during swim leg
The competitor who died during the swim leg of the IronMāori multisport event in Napier was a 50-year-old woman from Auckland, police confirmed.
Her name is Rachel Louise James, of South Head, Auckland
Police described the water-related incident as a sudden death and said it was reported just after 7.40am on Saturday.
"Police offer condolences to her family and loved ones at this difficult time," a police spokesperson said.
Her death has been referred to the Coroner.
In an emotional statement posted on the IronMāori Facebook page on Sunday, organisers said: "It is absolutely heartbreaking to have a participant pass at our event, as they all become part of our wider whānau".
"Firstly our hearts go out to the whānau, we send our aroha and heartfelt sorrow to each and everyone of you at this very sad and tough time, please know that we are thinking of you all."
The organisers thanked the Surf Life Saving team, the swim director and marshals, event medics, emergency services and all others who helped and supported the “team,” and kaumātua who guided the tikanga.
They also thanked all participants for accepting the decisions that were made.
“They were not easy ones to make,” they said. “However we know they were the right ones, so we are truly thankful for the way you received them.”