Adrian Bailey, Event Director, Active QT

Adrian Bailey is the proud owner of 3D Rotorua, a popular Multisport event incorporating kayaking, mountain biking, running and walking. Based at the beautiful Lake Tikitapu, and held over Queen’s Birthday weekend, the event attracts everyone from the beginner to the elite. 

Active QT, Adrian’s company, manage events all over the New Zealand but he has a special place for Rotorua as it offers the one thing he enjoys most, great trails for his favourite sport of running.

A keen athlete from a very young age, Adrian has represented his native country Wales around the world at numerous events from Cross Country races to Ultra Marathons. 

He also dabbled in a little Adventure Racing but it was the world’s best Multisport race that bought Adrian to New Zealand for the first time, when in 2001 he took part in the annual Coast to Coast. He was so moved by the Kiwi Culture and the opportunity to train in New Zealand’s spectacular mountains , he decided to emigrate the following year, choosing Queenstown as his new home.

Once Adrian was eligible to represent New Zealand, he donned the Kiwi singlet and represented the Silver Fern at the Comrades Ultra Marathon in South Africa in 2006 and at the 100km World Running Championships in Italy in 2008.

Although Adrian isn’t racing as much as he used to, he is often seen out and about running, biking and paddle boarding with his six year old daughter and more often than not speed walking between meetings!

His enthusiasm for organising events is driven by his sporting experiences over the years, and a desire to promote adventure and well-being opportunities to people from all walks of life. 

Events can be motivating, inspiring, challenging and rewarding, as well as an opportunity to set and achieve personal goals, which in turn inspire others to do the same.

In recent years, Active QT have been responsible for organising numerous National Championship events including the New Zealand Mountain Running Championships, New Zealand Cross Tri Championships, New Zealand Multisport Championships, New Zealand Secondary Schools Multisport Championships and the prestigious Racing the Planet 6 day, 250km multi-stage race in Wanaka.

During his recent time in Rotorua we asked him a few questions we thought you might be interested in learning about:

How long have you been involved in the event industry and what led you to become involved?

Since April 2009. I was out with a group of friends on a Sunday morning group run in early January 2009 and a friend of mine asked me had I ever thought about organising an event… A few months later I organised my first event at Jacks Point Golf Course in Queenstown. A monthly 5km and 10km winter fun run series that spanned a further eight years.

If someone was to ask you about your job, how would you describe what you do? 

I love creating and hosting events and bringing people together from far and wide to enjoy a variety of adventures in unique and beautiful locations. I enjoy the challenge of coordinating all that is required to host an event and then seeing it evolve.

What has been your best experience so far whilst working in the industry, and what do you look back on with most pride? 

In 2019 I was contracted by an international company to coordinate and host a 6 day, 250km Ultra Marathon in Central Otago… This was a humungous undertaking with the event being quite different to the normal event i’d organise. With the nature of the event being spread out over 6 days it was a mammoth task keeping on top of everything, however everything came together nicely and the event was a huge success. I was quite overwhelmed and very proud of what the team had accomplished.

What advice would you offer someone new to the industry? 

More and more events have popped up in recent years which is great but there are many events that offer the same thing! My advice would be to think outside the box and come up with something a little different to the norm whilst at the same time be appealing to everyday people.

Is there a particular aspect of organising you enjoy more and why? 

I enjoy all aspects of organising events however there are two aspects that are stand out for me. I love designing new courses, particularly trail and mountain running courses that offer a variety of terrain and wow factor views that will excite participants along their journey. 

Whilst I don’t get the opportunity to MC my own events these days as there is so much going on during an event at an given time; I’m motivated by peoples accomplishments as they cross the finish line knowing what they have experienced and endured during their adventure… 

What is your event related ambition, what would you like to achieve? 

I’m still working on it but will soon be revealed!!!

Adrian is always happy talking, so feel free to get in touch if you have any questions or ideas you want to share. To find him, go to the Active QT website or email Kiaora@theorganiser.co.nz and we would be happy to pass on your details to Adrian.

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