National 4x4 Trials

The National 4x4 Trials series is run by the NZFWDA competitions committee. It is a series of events usually run between Labour weekend and Easter.

The vehicles

There are several categories of vehicle modification levels that compete over the same hazards and they are defined as 'Classes' in the competition rule book, which may be downloaded from link below along with license application form.

The hazards

Teams compete on a number of hazards where the aim is to get as far through the course without stopping or touching a hazard marker peg. Each hazard is designed to challenge the driver, navigator and their 4x4 to the limit and often only a few teams will manage to complete a hazard.


Teams who make it through the full length of the course get a score of 0, with incremental points being assigned to each set of marker pegs back to the start pegs, which are assigned 100 points. At the end of the event, the team with the least points wins.

Great to watch

4x4 Trials are great spectator events, being able to get right up close to the action. It's a sport of finesse and precision and a true test of man and machine.

For more information visit

Winch Challenge

A winch challenge competition is an event made up of several off road stages set over rough terrain where the teams race one at a time, attempting to be the fastest to get their 4wd from the start to the finish.

The stages

Because of the challenging nature of the stages, the 4wd's are all equipped with winches so when they don't quite drive up over, or through, whatever obstacles they come across, the co-driver (winch-man) leaps into action setting up the winch to get the vehicle back on firm ground as fast as possible. The clock doesn't stop while the teams are winching so excellent teamwork, fitness and ingenuity are all needed.

Vehicle specifications

Some of the 4wd vehicles are highly modified, but all of the 'Challenge Class' must remain road legal and comply with a set of vehicle specifications that encourages innovation but ensures winch challenge is an affordable, safe and enjoyable motorsport. There has been a 'Club Class' category added to the mix of competition that provides a lower level of competition and vehicle specification.


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