Canterbury fan Julie Patterson takes Log o' Wood to Antarctica for first time

Julie Patterson with the Ranfurly Shield at Scott Base in Antarctica.

Julie Patterson with the Ranfurly Shield at Scott Base in Antarctica.

It's been to all sorts of strange places, but Antarctica can now be added to the Log of Wood's colourful history.

Canterbury Rugby 2016 volunteer of the year Julie Patterson, who works as Antarctica New Zealand's human resources manager, took the Ranfurly Shield on an adventure to Scott Base last month.

Patterson said she came up with the idea to take it to the icy continent immediately after Canterbury defended it against North Harbour last October, which ensured the red and blacks held it for the summer. 

She ran her idea past Crusaders and Mitre 10 Cup logistics manager John Miles and communications manager Juliet Calder.

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"I said, 'I've just had this crazy idea, what do you reckon the chances are of me taking it down to Scott Base?'," Patterson said.

"They were all very supportive and it was great."

Patterson, who has been on the Canterbury Rugby disciplinary panel for more than 20 years, said she took the Ranfurly Shield in its case and used it as a surprise during a base meeting.

"Honestly, the look on people's faces," she said.

"[Christchurch] is a gateway city to Antarctica and it's great to be able to link those two. It was great to be able to take it down there and see how excited people were to be able to see it up close.

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"To me, it was this iconic piece of New Zealand Rugby in Scott Base, another iconic bit of the world for us. It was a match made in heaven."

First played for 113 years ago, the Ranfurly Shield has been on road trips and in pubs all over the country in the aftermath of unions winning it.

Canterbury won the Log o' Wood for the 15th time last year, after beating Waikato 29-23 in Hamilton. 

 - Stuff


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