International riders here for Woodhill to Whaka

By Adriana Weber

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Garth Weinberg.
Garth Weinberg.

Hundreds of mountain bikers will be coming to Rotorua this weekend for the final leg of the Woodhill to Whaka Mountain Bike Orienteering Carnival.

The event, which began near Auckland last weekend, will wrap up with a series of orienteering events in Whakarewarewa and Waipa.

Event organiser Erin Swanson said more than 180 bikers were competing, including about 50 from Australia and a smaller number from Europe.

"It's become an international event and attracted people from around the world, which is great to see," Ms Swanson said, adding to those people who had never heard of mountain bike orienteering, the sport was exactly how it sounded.

"It's a mix of both, basically it's orienteering but on a mountain bike. Bikers have all the fun of mountain biking but the added challenge of having to navigate their way around the tracks."

Bikers must find the quickest route for a track with a map or a compass, she said.

Ms Swanson said people interested in trying the sport could enter recreational events today and tomorrow. People could enter on the day of the event but would have to bring their own mountain bikes and pay a fee.

Coaching and extra help will be available to newcomers and there will be several other competitions and spot prizes on offer at the event.

Among the well-known bikers to attend is single speed champion Garth Weinberg.

For more information visit www.mtbocarnival.com.

- ROTORUA DAILY POST

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