Introducing JOANNA SHARPE - Ultra Distance Cyclist

Introducing JOANNA SHARPE - Ultra Distance Cyclist

Welcome to our Ambassador blog series, where we celebrate the diverse passions and pursuits of ordinary Kiwi's achieving the extraordinary. From athletes to artists and everything in-between, they embody the spirit of New Zealand through their shared love for their respective sports, activities, passions and occupations.

Join us in discovering their inspiring stories.



Brief outline on who you are, your background, occupation, where you live.
My name is Joanna Sharpe. I split my time between living in Coromandel Township and Clarks Beach, both places I love. Alongside being Associate Director of Retail Solutions, Commercial and Retail Leasing and Sales company, I'm also a passionate ultra distance cyclist. I was born in the UK but love NZ so much I made it my home over 20 years ago. The lifestyle here and opportunity for adventure has me hooked.

What is your chosen sport/occupation/passion/interest/hobby? What attracted you to this? Why do you love doing it?
My sport is ultra distance cycling. Think very long multi day adventures that can be anything from a few hundred to a few thousand km in duration. Whilst my passion is supported racing (where a crew of amazing individuals act as support crew following me as I ride solo and basically looking after me and keeping me comfortable as I race with minimal rest and sleep) I also love self-supported events and adventures whereby I carry everything I need with me on the bike and find the remote roads and trails and adventure independently.

What are the pros and cons of what you do? What would you consider your biggest achievement(s) to date? What would be your ultimate goal/dream/ destination/achievement?

The best things about my sport are finding roads less travelled, being immersed in nature and experiencing the high of traveling to new places both in NZ and overseas. It's also fascinating to let you mind wander for days on end - its refreshing and exhilarating at the same time. Naturally it comes with its challenges, some being fairly obvious such as minimal sleep when racing, sore and tired muscles but it's well worth it. My most memorable adventures would be becoming the 1st female to cycle the length of NZ nonstop as well as becoming the 1st person to cycle the breadth of NZ (Cape to Cape) nonstop. Those are adventures my crew and I will never forget. In 2023 I was fortunate enough to also take part in the oldest cycle race in the world. Paris Brest Paris has been running since 1890. 1200km self-supported across France. With 7000 other riders it was an incredible adventure and I was also thrilled to be the fastest ever NZ female to finish it. In 2024, I'm looking forward to cycling the length of Australia (4500km) with my epic crew and hope in 2025 to become the 1st NZ Female to complete Race Across America, 5000km across the USA nonstop with my crew will be a career highlight I am sure.

How does X-ZONE help you to achieve your goals?
Without X-Zone, muscle recovery would be far more challenging. It assists so much with muscle warm up and recovery and I use it almost daily. Not only that but hours sitting in a follow car driving at 25kmph behind me is tough on the crew as well, so it’s a staple on all our adventures.

Follow Joanna's adventures:
Australia Record Attempt - Melbourne to Darwin, May 2024 fundraising for Bowel Cancer New Zealand.  You can donate here:

Instragram: sharpejoanna
Paris–Brest–Paris - Wikipedia

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