Reindeer trials are being conducted in New Zealand as the test flights of Santa’s sleigh shift their focus to take-off’s and landings.
The reindeer trials are a test of both the sleigh and reindeer. The 2 year old class of reindeer face a certification test as part of this event. New Zealand was chosen as the local for these trials because of the weather and the scheduled testing of Santa’s sleigh in Sector 1.
The trials only take a few days.
Reindeer handlers are looking to test and certify these 2 year old reindeer for take-offs and landings – perhaps the most difficult job for a reindeer as part of their sleigh pulling duties. Officials from the Reindeer Department have been in New Zealand for the past several weeks to prepare for the events.
“These are not like the reindeer games,” explain Elf Victor, head of reindeer operations at the North Pole. “These are for individual reindeer. It is an important process to test and certify their skills. Many of them are nervous because this is a huge certification to acquire. Any of the reindeer who want to work for Santa have to pass this test. So for them, this is very serious.”
The reindeer are kept isolated from the reindeer community and from elves not involved in the process. The results are kept confidential. This is one reason why Santa chooses for this process to take place away from the North Pole.
Sleigh pilots too use these events to certify. They too have to become expert in take-offs and landings.
Once this event is complete Santa’s sleigh will resume normal flight tests over Sector 1.