NZ Herald: Beauden Barrett made headlines last month after setting a fitness record at the Blues before even playing a game of rugby – but how will an actual track athlete fare in the grueling ‘Bronco’ test?


The Bronco is a fitness test used in rugby where players run shuttles of 20 metres, 40 metres, and 60 metres, five times over as quickly as they can.

Barrett ran the 1.2km drill in 4min 12sec, recording a personal best and setting a Blues record.

NZME’s Coast took the Bronco challenge to teen sensation and Olympic hopeful Sam Tanner, who usually competes in the 1500m.

Thanks to his training as a middle distance runner, the 19-year-old predictably smashed Barrett’s record with a time of 4min 1sec.


However, Tanner said it wasn’t easy and explained how it differed from his usual running.

“In the normal track, you’re not having to stop and start like that,” Tanner said. “Sometimes there’s a change of pace but it’s not that intense.”

Tanner, who holds the national U-19 record for the 1500m, said it was a “good feeling” to beat Barrett’s time by more 11 seconds.


This article first appeared in the New Zealand Herald and republished here with permission.

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