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Miranda Kerr and John Eales join NZ campervan convoy

Contributor:
Fuseworks Media
Fuseworks Media
Miranda Kerr
Miranda Kerr

The heart of Auckland's waterfront came alive this morning with passionate renditions of Waltzing Matilda, green and gold paraphernalia, a typically Aussie barbeque and some unsurprising trans-Tasman rivalry as The Great Crusade, the ultimate supporter's tour of New Zealand, kicked off with a star-studded bang.

Rugby legend John Eales, Australian Lambassador Sam Kekovich, international supermodel Miranda Kerr together with fanatical fans launched the 25 strong campervan convoy as it hit the road this morning to embark on a nationwide adventure, following the Qantas Wallabies as they take on the world.

Miranda Kerr said she was thrilled to be part of the ultimate supporter's tour and wished the Great Crusade winners well on their tour of New Zealand.

"Its awesome to see such passionate fans supporting the Qantas Wallabies, the six week Great Crusade convoy is the perfect way for fans to get behind the team and see New Zealand at the same time," said Kerr.

Australian Rugby legend John Eales said "this type of activity is such a boost for players, it makes all the difference to know that so many people are behind you."

The Great Crusade members and fans were treated to a big Aussie breakfast this morning cooked by John Eales, Aussie Lambassador Sam Kekovich and Miranda Kerr. Lamb sausages were a specialty on the menu, to celebrate one of the finest exports the two nations share. Aussie Lambassador Sam Kekovich said "today is about celebrating rugby and good times and of course the event wouldn't have been complete without some lamb sausages on the hot plate."

Rugby fans entered online to win one of 23 spots for them and a friend to join the convoy for two weeks, by uploading a video submission showing how far they would go to support their team. The six week convoy will see three waves of winners fly to New Zealand to enjoy two weeks each on the Crusade.

The tour will take in the best New Zealand has to offer, including vineyards, mountain ranges and beaches, bungy jumping, jet boating, thermal springs and plenty of buzzing nightlife.

Winners were decided by a panel of judges including Australian rugby legend Matthew Burke, Australian television and radio host Mike Goldman and Australian film director Gregor Jordan.

Corporate partners include Tourism New Zealand, Tourism Auckland, Positively Wellington and Tourism Christchurch, Carlton United Breweries, Parnell Partners Group and Total Sports Travel, Sony Ericsson and Kooga.

The competition launched in May with winners receiving return Qantas flights to New Zealand and a luxury van for up to two weeks with all meals and activities included.

To celebrate the launch of the campaign, Qantas also painted one of its trans-Tasman B737-800 aircraft in a new rugby livery, which is ferrying passengers across the Tasman to this great event.

The Great Crusade convoy was originally scheduled to commence in Christchurch prior to the earthquake that devastated the city earlier this year and in recognition of this, a gold coin donation drive has been organized throughout the tour in order to make a contribution to the rebuilding of Christchurch stadium.

The adventures of The Great Crusade convoy will be captured and shared online as daily webisodes on www.thegreatcrusade.com.

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