The Tauranga BMX Club had a strong showing at the 2016 North Island BMX Titles in Cambridge over Labour weekend, with 12 riders making finals in 14 classes.

Tauranga entered a strong team of 31 riders who competed across 36 classes in the 558 rider field.

The North Island Titles was the first major meeting of the BMX calendar and also included the transtasman Mighty 11s race series.

This series comprised the top four male and female 11-year-olds from Australia and New Zealand who compete in a points-based series.


Tauranga rider Elliot Kale, a member of the NZ female Mighty 11 team, had strong rides to help the girls defeat their Australian counterparts and secure the Mighty 11 trophy.

The New Zealand boys comfortably won and retained their Mighty 11 trophy after dominating the track in all of their rides.

Team manager, John Wragg from Tauranga, said: "The team performed really well given it is so early in the season.

"A lot of riders have just finished winter sports and have had next to no time on their bikes.

"It was really pleasing to see riders achieve some personal bests. Willow Bourke made her first podium, securing second place in the 8 Girls and Tom Eastwood, competing in his first major meet, achieved a semifinal berth in his class."

The event was yet another personal triumph for Karepa Heke Kaiawha, who maintained his commanding position in the 12-year boys and 11-12 cruiser classes.

He was undefeated over the weekend, winning all his 15 races to retain his double New Zealand and North Island BMX Championship titles.

"Backing up his double from last year was an outstanding achievement for Karepa," Wragg said.

"His build-up was hampered with a foot infection, however he is a determined young man and didn't let that get in the way of his number one target."

Wragg said another rider to have a strong weekend racing in two classes was Abbey Simcock.

"Abbey is possibly the quiet achiever. She goes about her work with minimal fuss, however is always close to the front. Making finals in both cruiser and 20-inch classes was a great result."

Ollie Robinson could consider himself unlucky in the 13-year boys division. He was sitting seventh after the moto section of the meet but crashed out in his semifinal after being clipped from behind.

Tauranga had 14 finalists across a wide range of classes.

Tauranga results:
Karepa Heke Kaiawha 1st 12 Boys and 1st 11-12 Cruiser, Willow Bourke 2nd 8 Girls, Abbey Simcock 3rd 12 Girls, James McManus 4th 14 Boys, Caleb White 4th 6 Boys, Jacob White 4th 5 & Under, Jakub Bourke 5th 15 Boys, Gavin Pendergrast 5th 35-39 Cruiser, Abbey Simcock 5th 11-12 Cruiser, Hannah Mason 6th 9 Girls, Daniel Simcock 6th 8-10 Cruiser, Kiera Waite 7th 10 Girls, Mitchell Wragg 7th 14 Boys.