Bike festival brimming with events for everyone

By Matthew Martin


With only a month to go before Rotorua's first Bike Festival, organisers have released a full programme of events covering just about everything you could imagine in the world of cycling.

The inaugural Rotorua Bike Festival is on between February 8 and 17 and organisers say a full schedule for the 10-day celebration of cycling has the team already looking forward to 2014.

Events and Venues manager Martin Croft said it was great to have a full roster of events with something for everyone.

"The support of the Rotorua Energy Charitable Trust and local businesses like More FM, The Daily Post, Advocate Print, Expand A Sign, Nzo Active and Victoria Grove Costume Hire are helping set the foundations of an event that will grow and grow over the next few years."

He said it was not just the headline acts - such as Rotorua's longest running mountain bike event The Cateye Moonride, the 2013 Mountain Bike National Championships, the BMX Rotorua National Championships qualifiers or the brand-new Giant 2W Gravity Enduro that were putting a spring in the step of festival organisers.

"The local cycling community are all organising different events.

"We've got the full range from fun rides for the kids, Bike Polo, street criterium, Pimp my Bike, road races, Let's Ride skills clinics, the Agroventures Shweeb World Champs, the craziness of Bike Speedway, The Redwoods Coast and most things in between."

One event that is not being held in Rotorua is The Strawberry Bike Jam, which will instead be held at the Onepu Mountain Bike Park on the road to Whakatane.

Mr Croft said the range of events underlined the strength of the entire region's love for cycling.

Strawberry Bike Jam co-organiser Mike van der Boom said he was excited to be part of the festival.

"We've got one of New Zealand's top jumps experts, Paul Langlands, doing demos, which the kids will love, and plenty of other entertainment. It's going to be a cracker."

He said the Strawberry Jam would prove mountain biking wasn't just for young people.

"There's lots of interest in our Gold Card Ride," he said.

"Plenty of over-65-year-olds seem keen to mountain bike."

Mr Croft said another festival event, being held at Rainbow Mountain, would feature some serious hills on the Department of Conservation (DOC) built Rainbow Mountain trail.

DOC community relations officer Rob Griffiths said one of the great things about Rainbow Mountain was that you could ride to it on Te Ara Ahi - the Rotorua section of the National Cycleway - from the city.

"Rainbow Mountain is a trail for grade 3 to 4 riders and is quite technical, but we'll have experienced guides from Mountain Bike Rotorua helping us out and a sausage sizzle to carbo and protein load at the end."

The Rainbow Mountain track is a spectacular mix of rocky single-track and sections in native bush that take in magnificent views of the surrounding countryside.

"It's also close to Kerosene Creek if anyone wants to have a hot pool," Mr Griffiths said.


Festival events:

Let's Ride MTB Skills Training _ February 9

North Island Bike Polo Tournament _ February 9

The World Shweeb Champs at Agroventures _ February 9

Free Family Fun Ride _ February 10

Orienteering BOP MTB Adventure Quest _ February 10

Victoria Grove Costume Hire "Pimp My Bike'' _ February 10

Rotorua City Street Criterium & Parade _ February 10

The Redwoods Coast _ February 11

Summer CRI Criterium Series _ February 12

Tykes on Trykes _ February 12

Rainbow Mountain Ride _ February 12

National Go By Bike Day _ February 13

Onepu Strawberry Bike Jam _ February 13

Ladies Shuttle Night _ February 13

Frocks on Bikes _ February 14

Rotorua Bicycle Speedway _ February 14

Summer CRI Bryce Rd Handicap Race _ February 14


The Skyline Sprint Warrior _ February 15


MoreFM Bike Expo _ February 15 & February 16

RotoVegas Jump Jam _ February 16

BMX National Qualifiers Meet _ February 16

National Mountain Bike Cross Country Champs _ February 16

National Mountain Bike Downhill Champs _ February 17

Giant 2W Gravity Enduro _ February 17

 

Event details can be found at www.rotoruabikefestival.com

 

- ROTORUA DAILY POST

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