In May this year, Beauden Barrett went viral for breaking the Blues Bronco record having made the switch to the Blues from the Hurricanes. However, All Blacks trainer Nic Gill has revealed that Beauden isn't the only freakishly fit Barrett with his two brothers – Jordie and Scott – both being among the fittest players in New Zealand.
The Barrett trio were all named by Gill who revealed the three fittest All Blacks backs and forwards, as judged by Bronco results, and it makes for impressive reading for the trio of Taranaki brothers. The Bronco test is used as a measurement of aerobic endurance, sees players run shuttles of 20 metres, 40 metres and 60 metres five times over as quickly as possible.
In an interview with Stuff.co.nz's Paul Cully, Gill said Beauden and Jordie, along with Chiefs playmaker Damian McKenzie, were the three fittest backs in the country. While Scott Barrett, Codie Taylor, and Tom Robinson are the fittest forwards.
Although Blues' blindside flanker Tom Robinson is not an All Black, he is among the 45-50 players who has come under Gill's watchful eye in New Zealand.
Beauden Barrett made headlines in May for setting a Blues club record for the fastest Bronco time, setting a rapid pace of four minutes at 12 seconds.
Beauden Barrett breaks the Blues Bronco record and beats his PB straight out of lockdown 😳🤯 pic.twitter.com/P4fSothXNB— Ultimate Rugby (@ultimaterugby) May 18, 2020
Gill also revealed to Stuff that the modern rugby player doesn’t spend hours on end pounding the pavements with their weekly running kilometres would be less than the dedicated social runner.
“In a normal week our backs would cover between 20-33 kilometres,” Gill told Stuff.
“In a game a Beauden Barrett, if he's playing fullback, might cover 8km.
“Maybe on Monday he might do 4km, Tuesday another 8km, and then Wednesday have a breather, Thursday another 6km and Friday 4km before 8km during the game.
“For the forwards, probably 15km-20km in terms of total distance ... some of that is running fast, and some of that is jogging slow.”
The All Blacks’ best Bronco performers, forwards and backs 👇🏻 - and how far they run each week. https://t.co/ldC91WWqne— Paul Cully (@paulcullystuff) August 7, 2020
Gill also went on to explain how the modern day tight forward has changed since he joined the All Blacks in 2008.
“I started with the ABs in 2008 and the front row and the second row have put on an average of 15kg to 20kg in 12 years. It’s more than a kilogram a year.
“Back in the day Ben Franks was 112kg as a prop, but if we were to average the top four props in the country right now, they'd average 127kg.”